Pros and Cons of Cohabitation Vs. Marriage in California

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce mediation; California Divorce MediatorsThe subject of whether marriage better or cohabitation warrants a lot of debate based on people’s personal experiences and beliefs. There are some who believe nothing can replace a marriage in a loving relationship, while others beg to differ and believe that cohabitation is equally amazing without the legality of marriage. We discuss some of the benefits and disadvantages of cohabitation over marriage.

Pros of cohabitation over marriage 

  • One of the most obvious benefits is that you get to share your home and life with someone you love and like to be around because you love the person and not because of legality binding you.
  • Cohabiting has all the financial benefits of being in a marriage without the legal hassles that come with marriage. You get to split costs, manage finances, and invest together with your partner.
  • Cohabiting can be a great way to understand if you and your partner can sustain a marriage. It is a good way to know how well you both work together as a couple living together before taking the plunge and getting married.

Cons of cohabitation over marriage

 There is some research that shows that marriage may have physical and psychological benefits that are lacking in cohabitation. However, some results are still ambiguous about the reasons behind these differences.

  • There is no legal responsibility or hassle, making it easier to leave a cohabitation arrangement. Marriage demands more legal commitment and, therefore, there is more thought given before a spouse decides to leave.
  • If you have kids while cohabiting, custody rights can become complicated if you decide to go your separate ways.

Cohabitation in California 

California does not recognize common law marriage except when a couple is considered married under common law marriage in a state that recognizes it and then moves to California. California recognizes cohabitation as a legal form of relationship, and there are some provisions for couples who wish to cohabit but not marry.

If you are cohabiting to test your relationship before getting married, you can enter a prenuptial or premarital agreement that lists rules and laws applicable to you as a couple once you get married.

If you simply wish to cohabit without the legal hassles of marriage, then the state has a provision of getting a cohabitation agreement, also known as a nonmarital agreement. This formal agreement lists out responsibilities and rights for the cohabiting couple and works as a contract that is outside of marriage laws.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation

Advice On Reconciling After A Marital Separation

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

divorce lawyers in Orange County; The Maggio Law FirmDo you want to improve your chances of reuniting after your legal separation? Then, it is always better to start the process with complete honesty. Both of you should be prepared to honestly discuss all those issues, which resulted in the trouble. It can be various factors such as addiction, an act of betrayal, or abuse. Whatever it is, they should in the open. When the two partners are dishonest about the issues that hurt them, it is unrealistic to expect that they will be sincere about the changes they should implement in their relationship to salvage the marriage. It is always recommended to take the help of an impartial mediator or a third-party therapist or counselor.

What should you do to get back after your separation?

Being completely transparent with your partner is another important step to follow if you are really keen about a marital reconciliation after being separated. When trust factor has disappeared in a marriage, transparency is the perfect antidote for the couple. Both the parties should be completely frank about their personal schedules, habits, and finances. Such a step will make sure that the couple gets back the lost trust to some extent. It is a good idea to contemplate coaching.

Give a chance for marital reconciliation

When there is a space in a relationship, it shows what is important and what does not matter. It also teaches what helps and what can be hurtful. When both you and your spouse are serious about giving your marriage another chance and your partner to echoes your sentiments, you would definitely have one more chance to marriage reconciliation.

Check out these tips when you and your partner intend to get back together especially after your legal separation.

There is no harm in accepting your mistakes

In order to make your marriage work, both you and your partner should accept all those mistakes made in the past, which led to your separation initially. If you and your partner are one of those couples who are interested in reuniting, you should be prepared to apologize to each other. You should realize and appreciate that frankness; trust and forgiveness are some of those key ingredients, which can salvage your marriage.

You should be prepared for certain changes

Being willing to change is perhaps one of the most crucial factors to get back together. You should freely discuss the desired changes you are looking forward to. It is imperative for you to be ready to change yourself for your spouse.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation

Can A Separation From Your Spouse Save Your Marriage?

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Divorce mediation attorney Orange County; California Divorce MediatorsDo you feel that your marriage is in a crisis? If it is so then you may be in a dilemma about what to do next. There is a possibility that you have not left any stones unturned to salvage your marriage starting from undergoing joint therapy sessions to dating one another once again. However, things seemed to have got even worse. In case you are at the rope’ end, your marriage could still be saved by opting for a trial separation. Although. It may not be intuitive to keep both of you together, in some cases, separations have proved to be useful for those couples who are going through a rough patch and have managed to bind them together.

Steps for Trying A Trial Separation

Spending some time away from your spouse

For several months, you and your spouse have been bickering against each other and arguing heavily. Perhaps, you need to show a little fondness toward each other now. If you and your spouse are away from each other, getting away from the daily grind becomes simpler and regular fights may also subside for the better. You can get time to retrospect at a lot of things, which you could have missed out when you were together. It is usual for everyone to need a little space on certain occasions. If there has been trouble in your marriage for some time, it is not possible to see something nice about your partner at all. However, separation can give you an opportunity to get away from them. It can also serve as a reminder of your love for one another.

Realize that you appreciate one another

When you stay with someone, it is easy to take many things for granted. It is especially true when both you and your spouse are living together for many years. Both of you can call
each other in the middle of a crisis and there is always a person to handle the mess in their daily life. But when you go through a trial separation, it becomes easier to learn and understand that you are missing your spouse at your side. You may also realize their appeal as your spouse.

Go for a legal separation

Though it is not compulsory to get in touch with a divorce lawyer for figuring out ways of staying in different houses for some time, a lawyer can come handy to ensure that things work out according to your convenience.

You need a break sometimes

At times, a separation is a time when you don’t have to worry about the well-being of others. You can utilize this time to go out on a vacation with your friends. You may also get time to make up your mind on your exact feelings are about your relationship with your spouse.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation

Divorcees Explain the 4 Things You Should Know About Marriage

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

mediator divorce orange county; California Divorce MediatorsMarriage is a lifelong commitment to share your innermost self with your partner and stay together no matter how harsh the situations might be. However, there are a lot of people who prefer parting ways than living with someone who they cannot be happy with. Regardless of what your point of view regarding the nuptials might be, it will help to get a little insight from people who decided to call it quits with their partners.

  1. Love is not enough to sustain a marriage

While you might have heard about this quite a few times, it is actually quite pertinent to the subject at hand. Most of us think that all you need is love to thrive in a martial relationship. On the contrary, it is essential to ‘like’ your partner for what they really are and respect them for their values. He/she should be you best friend; a person you can blatantly share your innermost feelings with.

  1. Snap out of your reverie and smell the coffee

Believe it or not, but the annoying habits of your partner are still going to be there when you guys are married. In fact, they are going to multiply exponentially and seem absolutely insufferable once the initial attraction fizzles out and the monotony of married life settles in. While the haze of initial attraction will make you regard your man’s/lady’s idiosyncrasies as cute, you will start hating those very aspects of their personality once your tie the knot.

  1. You need space

Contrary to popular belief, you do not have to spend every single minute of your waking hours together! Your partner doesn’t have to like the same things as you and vice versa. Both of you will need your space and unnecessary nagging will get you nowhere. Getting married does not imply that you need to shut off everything and everyone except your partner. Both the spouses are different human beings and so will their lifestyle be.

  1. Communication is the key to resolving all disputes

If you feel that your partner is unhappy or upset about something, you need to make sure that you find out what it is. When you are married to someone who finds it difficult to open up, it might be hard to know what is on their mind. However, instead of giving up on them, you need to find a way to make them communicate. Instead of letting the problem fester in their minds, offer them a healthy release.

Remember that all marriages, no matter how perfect they appear, need work. It takes a lot of commitment, trust, and patience to nurture your relationship and make it stronger over the years.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation

Is Separation Good For Your Marriage?

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Divorce mediation attorney Orange County; California Divorce MediatorsAre you and your spouse continuously at loggerheads with one another? If that is the case, you might have started wondering whether it will be good to separate from one another or not. However, the solution is not as simple as it first appears. It will depend on various factors in your married life and the present situation both of you is dealing with.

Is it the right time to separate from your spouse?

When both you and your spouse discover that staying in each other’s company continuously is causing friction and heated arguments, separation could be a good idea  to see if you can save your marriage. In all relationships, many people tend to be extra dependent on one another and marriage is not an exception. Some people who do not have their own identity may start resenting their partners that could create major fractions in their relationships. Spending time apart from one another may help people to build up their individual identities. So, when they do decide to reunite their mind and spirit can renew the relationship.

Another scenario when separation could be good in a marriage is when one of the spouses has committed adultery while being married. Spending some time away from each other can help the spouse who was betrayed to think clearly and decide the future course of action. Moreover, staying close up the unfaithful husband or wife can cause more heartbreaks and agonies to the betrayed partner, which is not good to repair that marriage.

You find couples who are in a long distance relationship claim that such an arrangement has a rekindling effect on their relationship. Moreover, many of these couples say that it adds a new fuel to their otherwise mundane relationships. However, that does not necessarily mean you need to always move away from your spouse to generate the same kind of feelings. But, it is not a bad idea at all to separate at times briefly to bring in some passion.

Sometimes it may not be good to opt for separation in a marriage 

In any relationship, effective communication plays a key role. When you have certain concerns that you have stopped communicating with your spouse, the issues may never get resolved and your relationship can become worse. So, before you make a decision to go for a separation, you need to ensure that both you and your spouse have discussed all your issues and concerns. Take some time and speak freely about the issues that are bothering you and try to find out solutions for them. If both of you show a willingness to work towards resolving these issues, you have actually taken a positive step to save your marriage.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation.

Top 5 Reasons for Couples Getting Divorced

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Divorce mediators Orange County; California Divorce MediatorsMarriage is not an easy relationship. There are several cases when couples started their married life with the best intentions but ended up getting divorced. There could be various reasons for which couples get divorced. Here are some of the most common reasons for couples ending up being in divorce court.

Extra-marital affairs or adultery

According to a report published by AARP, even today, adultery plays a big role in people filing for divorce. But, reports also claim that there are several reasons that lead to a spouse getting into an extra-marital affair such as unequal sexual urges, getting distant, having different interests, resentment and fury.

Gain in weight or obesity

Though it may appear as a surprising reason, unusual weight gain by one of the spouses is also known to be a major reason why couples get divorced. A survey conducted by Men’s Health magazine reported that when one of the spouses gains a lot of weight, it can come in the way of their marital bliss. If your spouse does not attract or get turned on to your body, there could be problems like resentment and rejection, which can be marriage-threatening issues.

Monetary issues

According to a report published by the American Journal of Sociology, when a husband is unemployed, it can be a major criterion for divorce. In other words, lack of or insufficient money can cause big problems in a marriage, often leading to a divorce. If a married couple faces financial on strainers, there could be a lot of stress. This can further lead to a lack of proper communication and constant arguing. There are many couples who have different views on the others’ spending habits. Relationships may undergo lots of stress where one controls or has the finances, which often end up in a divorce.

Lack of proper communication

Often you will hear people saying that proper communication is the key to a successful marriage. Many relationship coaches opine that negative communication or lack of communication may diminish feelings of romance and love between couples. When a couple stops having effective communication, marital troubles leading to a divorce are not unusual.

Abuse

Abuse can be either a spouse being physically or emotionally abused by the other spouse. These are a common reason why many couples get divorced. Verbal or physical fighting that happens frequently between couples may make their relationship volatile and eventually end up in a divorce.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation

Ways To Reconcile With Your Spouse And Avoid A Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

divorce lawyers in Orange County; The Maggio Law FirmMarriages can sometimes be “made in heaven” but for some individuals far from living in paradise their life becomes a living hell. Just because a document says that a man and wife is married does not mean that they will be together for the rest of their lives. A separation or divorce can take place any time and no document can give a guarantee that such a thing will never take place. However, many couples decide to split due to lack of proper mediation or counseling. There are ways to save a marriage if one wants too and the following are some of those ways.

  1. Don’t play the victim card

If you are serious about protecting your marriage, stop playing the victim card against your spouse. You may have done it when you decided to separate but don’t do it anymore. Instead, try telling your spouse how important he/she is in your life and why you must stop the divorce from taking place.

  1. Try talking it out

You may have acted erratically when things went wrong but now that you have decided to save your marriage, try talking your partner out of it. Use the help of a mediator if you want but it is very important that you talk with your partner.

  1. Accept your mistakes

It takes a lot of courage to accept that one is wrong. Try pin-pointing the mistakes that you may have made knowingly or unknowingly during your marriage and accept them. Accepting your mistakes will also make you spouse realize his/hers mistake and this strategy is one of the best ways to save a marriage.

  1. Hire a good mediator

A good and experienced mediator will make sure that your thoughts and feelings are conveyed in the most effective manner to your spouse. A mediator’s job is to ensure that things remain as smooth as possible between two individuals. The goal of mediation is not to ensure that the divorce does not take place but to ensure that if it happens, it happens due to the right reasons.

Conclusion

Many individuals want to give another shot at their marriage and try to find ways to reconcile with their spouse. One of the best ways to do it is by accepting one’s mistake. Hiring a mediator works well and in many cases, mediators have been able to save couples from a divorce.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation

5 Ways To Avoid A Divorce As Told By A Divorce Attorney

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

orange county divorce mediation attorneys; California Divorce MediatorsDivorce proceedings can be very difficult and lengthy. It is advised to look for ways to save your marriage rather than go for a divorce. Take it from a divorce attorney and divorce mediator like me.  Here are 5 tips that you can follow to avoid a divorce:

  1. Don’t focus too much on property and assets

A recent study showed that couples who don’t rely on property and assets too much have a better marriage than their counterparts. Couples who focus too much on assets often lose focus of more important things that make the marriage work. Materialistic couples often exhibit signs of poor communication, low conflict resolution and low response to each other.

  1. Communicate with each other more often

Poor communication is a major cause of divorce. Couples who don’t interact properly often have a hard time understanding each other’s problem. The communication gap widens when couples don’t make any effort to have a conversation with each other. The distance destroys the unity and it leads to divorce.

  1. Spend some time apart

Too much closeness can be a bad thing sometimes. Take some time out for yourself and stay apart. Go for a vacation with friends or spend time with your own family. Distance plays a major role in keeping things interesting in a marriage. But don’t spend too much time apart. It can have the reverse consequence. Staying apart will give you more time to focus and yourself and less time to think about other problems.

  1. Be flexible and stay positive

Relationships don’t work based on one person’s likes and dislikes. It is a team effort and both of you must understand each other’s needs and preferences. It is very important to stay flexible in a relationship and realize that your partner’s problems are equally important.

It is also vital to stay positive about the relationship. There will be times when everything looks boring and different problems will arise but it is important to have a positive attitude. You need to focus on the bigger picture and concentrate on what’s really needed to save the relationship.

  1. Try to solve problems together

Whenever you face a problem try finding a solution as a team. Don’t dump the problem on your spouse while you sit back and enjoy. Whether the marriage will be successful or not depends on both of you and it is up to you to make things work.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation

The Benefits Of Seeking Counseling Before Filing For Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Orange County divorce mediation; California Divorce MediatorsDivorce can be very traumatic for you and your spouse, both on the emotional and financial front. If you feel that not everything is bad between you and your spouse, it’s probably a good idea to seek counseling before filing for a divorce.

Divorce therapy is sought by many couples heading for divorce and has helped many save their marriage. It is provided on individual basis. If you are going through a divorce right now then it is natural that you will experience a range of emotions like guilt, grief and anxiety.

How marriage counseling works

California has many professional divorce counselors and they provide a range of service for their clients. They even help choosing the right one for you. If you are selecting a counselor, then there are certain factors that you need to consider. Choose someone who holds a proper license and who has had experience in dealing with such issues. Read testimonials from clients and ask your friends and family to help you.

Benefits of marital counseling

  1. A marital counseling will help you resolve conflicts between you and your spouse in a healthy way. You will learn to communicate effectively with your spouse and it will also help you listen to his/her side of the story.
  2. You will start understanding the problems of your spouse and vice versa.
  3. You will learn to be assertive while not being offensive towards your spouse. Both of you must to be able to talk about your issues without the fear of hurting the other person. You will slowly realize that not every problem can be resolved through fights and sudden outbursts of emotions.
  4. You will build the ability to work through problem and unresolved issues in your marriage. Marriage counseling provides an environment where you can express yourself without expressing anger or unhappiness. In time, you might realize that your spouse is understanding and is also willing to do the same thing as you. It might also be the reverse where your spouse is not willing to work out anything. If that is the case, then there is not much that you can do but at least you will know that you’ve tried.
  5. You will start seeing your spouse in a new light. This will help you understand him/her and the reasons for getting a divorce. If your spouse is willing to undergo the same thing, then chances are high that your marriage can be saved.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation

What To Know About Getting Back Together After Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

orange county divorce mediators; California Divorce MediatorsMost couples who have made the tough decision of getting a divorce are most likely to not get back together or give their marriage another shot. However, for a few couples, they might realize post-divorce that they have in fact made a huge mistake and want to give their relationship another chance. Couples who would like to give their marriage another shot must realize that there will be a lot of hard work involved as well as therapy and marriage or relationship counseling. The couple will have to work out their issues amicably and forgive one another and forget the past in order to move on.

Legal proceedings to be followed if the couple are unsure about getting divorced

It’s always great new when a couple who has divorced wants to reconcile and get back together however as per the law there are certain legal proceedings that will have to be followed as per the norms. That is if the court has already granted or passed a divorce decree in favor of the parties.

If the couple are mutually interested in trying to work things out they will have to enter into a written agreement with each other stating that they are interested in putting their divorce case and all other hearings, orders, and other legal proceedings on hold for the time being till they figure out where they stand in their relationship. In this case, the court will put all divorce proceedings on hold and stop all temporary legal proceedings in order for the couple to work out their issues. All personal hearings will be pushed if the court is satisfied that the couple is genuinely interested in working things out and are not trying to resort to malicious activities or malpractice.

If the couple definitely does not want to get a divorce

However, if the couple is a 100% sure that they do not want to get divorced and in fact want to get back together again they can apply to the court to dismiss their divorce proceedings entirely without any prejudice. This means that the current divorce case would be canceled altogether and they can always file for another divorce at a later stage if the reconciliation was a failure.

If a second divorce is filed later on the date of separation would be the date of filing the second or latest divorce and would not be retrospective. Therefore, the division of assets and liabilities, alimony payments, child support conditions, etc. would be calculated as on the second date of separation.

To learn more about the divorce process in California and how mediation can help, please visit our page, What is Divorce Mediation