Family Law & Related Issues

Family Law & Related Issues

Planning on and maintaining a family is an important matter that takes a lot of thought and time. Certain issues may sprout up over time including those involving marriage, children, and violence. It is good to be prepared for these issues and know about each one to prepare for the future and what your options are.

Domestic Partners

California recognizes a domestic partner under Stats. 1999, Ch. 588 Sec 2 as “two adults who have chosen to share one another’s lives in an intimate and committed relationship of mutual caring.” California also recognizes that a domestic partnership is established when both people file a Declaration of Domestic Partnership with the Secretary of State if they are already unmarried, not related by blood, and both are at least 18 years of age, unless exceptions apply. 

These partnerships are extremely similar to traditional marriages in many cases because it provides many of the same benefits. 

Same Sex Marriages 

Same sex marriage is legally recognized as marriage between two spouses of the same gender in California. These spouses have the same rights and benefits as opposite-sex couples which includes tax relief, emergency medical decision-making power, spousal benefits, inheritance rights, and more.

Domestic Violence 

Under California Penal Code Section 13700, “Domestic violence” is defined as abuse that is committed against an adult or a minor who is a spouse, former spouse, cohabitant, former cohabitant, or person with whom the suspect has had a child or is having or has had a dating engagement relationship.”

California Family Code Section 6203 states “abuse” can mean to intentionally or recklessly cause or attempt to cause bodily injury, sexual assault, to place a person in reasonable apprehension of imminent serious bodily injury to that person or to another, or to engage in any behavior that has been or could be enjoined pursuant to Family Code Section 6320. 

Acts that can be enjoined pursuant to Family Code Section 6320 include, but are not limited to, molesting, attacking, striking, stalking, threatening, sexually assaulting, battering, harassing, destroying personal property, or disturbing the peace of the other party. 

When domestic violence occurs, you can ask for a domestic violence restraining order. You can ask for this when someone abuses you or someone you live with such as a child or relative, and you have a close relationship with that person.

Domestic Violence restraining orders can affect child custody and visitation rights. They can enable you to seek exclusive use of your home, require the other person to maintain financial obligations, such as mortgage payments, and preventing the other person from being within a certain number of yards from you or your children. You should be well-prepared for these proceedings and understand what to expect.

Additionally, when an incident is reported to the police and charges are pressed, criminal proceedings will occur as a result. The State may prosecute even if the victim does not want to prosecute in some cases and restraining orders may be set into place.

Restraining Orders 

According to California Code of Civil Procedure Section 525, an “injunction” (also known as a restraining order) is a “writ or order requiring a person to refrain from a particular at. It may be granted by the court in which the action is brought, or by a judge thereof; and when granted by a judge, it may be enforced as an order of the court.” Restraining orders, on a family level, can protect a member from being physically or sexually abused, threatened, stalked, or harassed. They will stop specific acts against everyone named in the order, keep the restrained person a certain distance away, or even in some circumstances tell the restrained person to move out from where the protected person lives and take only clothing and personal belongings along. 


In California, Family Code Section 7570 says that “there is a compelling state interest in establishing paternity for all children”. Establishing paternity if the first step toward a child support award, which, in turn, provides children with equal rights and access to benefits.” In a Paternity case, the court will make orders that say who the child’s legal parents are. If parents are married when the child is born, there is usually no question about parentage; however, in these modern times many children are born to unmarried parents, so the parentage needs to be established legally.

Establishing parental rights are necessary before things like custody, visitation, or child support can be ordered. If you are named as the parent of the child, be prepared for the court to make orders for you to care for that child.

You can count on the The Montes Law Firm, APC to find a personalized solution for you and your family’s legal needs, no matter the situation. Call The Montes Law Firm, APC at 714-731-8600 or contact us online to schedule a consultation with our Orange County child custody attorney today.