Getting a divorce in California is never as simple as just filing the paperwork and going your separate ways. No matter how amicable your situation is, once your divorce proceedings begin, many restrictions and rules are put into place regarding your financial and parenting rights. These restrictions during your divorce can significantly impact your life in ways you would not expect.
For example, if you're going through a divorce and want to plan a trip with your kids to go out of state, you may want to wait until everything is finalized. Without a court order or agreement with your spouse, taking your child out-of-state in violation of an automatic temporary restraining order, even just for the day, may result in a huge mess involving the police. You may also want to wait on taking the kids to Europe to visit their grandma. Courts generally do not want divorcing parents to leave the country with the children during the proceedings, particularly if they have ties to another country. Generally, the goal is to prevent you or your spouse from keeping your child in another country or runaway with the child while custody arrangements are still being determined.
Another standard divorce issue is your finances and property. Courts want to protect both spouses throughout the divorce and prevent them from hurting the other financially. That is why divorcing spouses generally are not permitted to empty their bank accounts, sell the house or car, or rack up the credit card bill. Buying necessities for you and the kids is fine, but anything more than that can raise a red flag. Even if you plan to sell something that is solely in your name, you are typically not allowed to do so, or even give it away, without consent from your spouse or a court order. You also cannot cancel your spouse's car, life, or health insurance or kick them off of your insurance plan during divorce proceedings.
If you are about to begin your divorce, keep these restrictions in mind and prepare accordingly. To find out more about how divorce proceedings can affect your life, contact a family law attorney.