Family Law

Divorces, custody matters, child support disputes and other family law issues can be emotionally charged and challenging for all parties involved. If you’re facing a complex family law matter, it can be difficult to make sound legal decisions on your own.

The attorneys at Ivie McNeill Wyatt Purcell & Diggs will handle your case with compassion and sensitivity while providing comprehensive service to help you reach the ideal solution. Our firm has extensive experience handling dissolutions of marriage and domestic partnerships; custody disputes; child support; palimony; domestic violence; and prenuptial, postnuptial and cohabitation agreements.

Dissolution of Marriage (Divorce)

Whether your divorce is amicable or contested, there are certain legal requirements that must be met. Ivie McNeill Wyatt Purcell & Diggs will help you navigate the family court system, provide you with accurate advice and protect your rights and assets.

Your attorney will support you through the entire divorce process, from filing or responding to a Petition for Dissolution to mediation or trial. Additionally, Ivie McNeill Wyatt Purcell & Diggs can assist with any related family law matters that arise during the divorce proceeding, including division of assets, custody issues and child or spousal support. If you’ve been served with divorce papers or you’re ready to file for divorce, Ivie McNeill Wyatt Purcell & Diggs will help you understand your options and take the next step.

Child Custody

Maintaining custody of children is one of the most stressful and critical family law issues that parents face. Because custody must be determined by the court and there are many potential outcomes, it’s very important that you have a skilled lawyer to advocate for you.

Whether you’re trying to gain sole custody, establish joint legal or physical custody or solidify a visitation agreement, Ivie McNeill Wyatt Purcell & Diggs can help you.

Child Support

California courts determine child support payments through a formula that considers both parents’ finances. However, our attorneys understand that leaving finances up to a formula doesn’t always take the full picture into account.

Ivie McNeill Wyatt Purcell & Diggs works diligently to ensure that your child support order is accurate and fair. We obtain and substantiate financial information, alert the court of any special circumstances and advocate for you and your children. Whether you’re seeking to receive support or you’ve been asked to provide it, our legal team will assist you and obtain modifications in the event of changed circumstances.

Paternity

Proving or disproving paternity is often a critical component of child support matters. Ivie McNeill Wyatt Purcell & Diggs can guide you through this sensitive process and help you make the best decisions based on test results.

In a contentious child support dispute, establishing paternity can be an important step in moving the case forward. If you are facing resistance, Ivie McNeill Wyatt Purcell & Diggs can help resolve the issue by requesting a court order to establish biological paternity.

Palimony/Marvin Actions

Even if you are not married to your long-term partner, Ivie McNeill Wyatt Purcell & Diggs can help you understand the legal options available to protect your assets and maintain your lifestyle in the event of a separation. Although cohabitating couples may not have access to the same legal remedies that married couples do, they do have the right to request financial support and the fair division of property through Marvin Actions or “palimony,” a payment similar to alimony specifically for unmarried couples.

With extensive family law and litigation experience, Ivie McNeill Wyatt Purcell & Diggs attorneys are well-versed on the factors that affect the viability of a Marvin claim. Whether you would like to request financial support or you need to defend against a claim, our attorneys can offer guidance and support.

Dissolution of Domestic Partnerships and Same-Sex Marriages

Dissolutions of domestic partnerships and same-sex marriages mirror heterosexual divorces in some ways, but they also come with unique legal challenges and requirements. If you’re faced with a dissolution, an attorney with no experience in domestic partnerships will not suffice.

Because same-sex marriage has changed so much in California in the last 10 years, couples in same-sex partnerships may be able to go through the divorce process much like a heterosexual couple would, or they may have unique legal considerations. Domestic partners, regardless of sexual orientation, can opt to go through a process similar to that of divorce, or they may be eligible to file for a Notice to Terminate Domestic Partnership; however, this process requires that you have no children and have not been domestic partners for more than five years, among other requirements.

Ivie McNeill Wyatt Purcell & Diggs draws on our extensive family law experience to provide you with guidance relevant to your specific situation. Our attorneys are familiar with each step in the dissolution process and can advise you on every issue that arises, no matter how complex.

Domestic Violence

When allegations of domestic violence come into play in a family law dispute, it can have major consequences on divorce and custody decisions. Ivie McNeill Wyatt Purcell & Diggs will help you understand the legal implications that domestic violence can have on your marriage and any pending family law matters.

If you or a member of your family has been a victim of domestic violence, our attorneys can secure a restraining order on your behalf and ensure that abusive behavior is taken into consideration by the court. If you’ve been accused of domestic violence, Ivie McNeill Wyatt Purcell & Diggs will confirm whether the claims are truthful and defend your reputation. In either case, our firm will make sure you see the justice you deserve.

Prenuptial, Postnuptial, and Cohabitation Agreements

Prenuptial, postnuptial and cohabitation agreements are common tools to establish and protect property when entering a marriage or relationship. Prenuptial agreements are established before marriage and determine the property and financial rights of each spouse. Postnuptial agreements serve a similar purpose but are signed after marriage, and cohabitation agreements are available for unmarried couples who need to protect their assets in the event of a breakup. When done correctly, these types of agreements can help prevent contentious legal battles in the future.

Our attorneys have significant experience drafting effective agreements that, when necessary, help the divorce or dissolution process go more smoothly. Ivie McNeill Wyatt Purcell & Diggs can create agreements that suit your specific purposes and are acceptable to both parties involved.

Appeals

Ivie McNeill Wyatt Purcell & Diggs handles appeals for family law matters in all California State Courts. Our experienced legal team will guide you through the intricacies of the family law appeals process.