Any relationship can have their problems. Most of the time, couples work out their differences amicably, with or without the help of friends, family, therapists and counselors. However, if the relationship looks as if it is better ended than continued there are many issues to contend with. These can be made more complex when there is a child or children to take care of, joint property rights and other assets to decide on.
In Los Angeles there are many government, private self-help and professional legal services which can be used to help work your way through the process of ending your relationship.
Therapists and Counselors in Los Angeles County
These are registered professionals who can help you work your way through marital problems and hopefully maintain your relationship for your mutual benefit and the welfare and long term benefit of any children that you have. There are many therapists and counselors all over Los Angeles and it is worth browsing these two sites which provide useful basic details and links to a large number of them.
California Courts Resources
The California Courts Self-Help pages provide detailed and informative information about the ways you can end a marriage or partnership in California as well as provide links to a large number of further resources which may prove useful.
The page on divorce explains the legal differences between the three main ways of ending a marriage or partnership in California. These are:
The actual legal process of ending a marriage in California is relatively straightforward as only one spouse or partner can decide unilaterally to end the relationship. California is also a no-fault state, which means, as the Self-help page explains, that there is no requirement to prove why the marriage should end.
The more complex and difficult decisions include child support and custody, visitation rights, whether it will affect your immigration status, property and assets distribution. Some, but not all of these matters are explained on the Self-Help pages.
The Family Law Facilitator
This is a person who is employed by the county court (e.g. both Los Angeles and Orange County Courts will have their own facilitators) who has legal knowledge but will not act as your attorney if you decide to go to court for any reason during your divorce separation, annulment or because of disputes over child support payments or child custody. The family law facilitator provides impartial help with forms and can help you if you do decide to go to court and represent yourself.
Private Counselors and Evaluators in Orange County
These are not professionals employed by the court but are mediators who can help you and your partner work your way through decisions about what to do about child support, child custody and visitation rights. They are not a substitute for therapists and counselors who are there to try and help you maintain your relationship or decide more logically what is best for you and your partner. The California Court provides a separate directory for counselors and evaluators.
Southern California Domestic Violence Hotline and Shelters
If you are a victim of domestic violence and need help or need to move out of the place where you are living and seek shelter, you can ring the National Domestic Hotline directly on 1-800-799-7233 or TDD: 1-800-787-3224.
The California Department of Public Health has a website with much useful information about domestic violence and what you can do as well as a directory to locate your nearest domestic violence shelter.
If you are in immediate danger, call 911. The Long Beach Police Department is located in Long Beach Central at 400 W Broadway, Long Beach as well as Lakewood at 4891 Atlantic Ave, Long Beach
This is an online legal resource and referral site that can help you with referrals and resources but is not a substitute for a family law or divorce attorney. The organization tends to focus on low to middle income earners.
The Law Offices of Damian M. Nolan
The lawyers at Law Offices of Damian M. Nolan can provide professional and sympathetic legal assistance if you need help with divorce, separation, property rights, child custody or any other aspect of family law in Los Angeles and Orange Counties.