Knowing how an attorney in San Diego analyzes your family law case [whether a paternity, divorce or legal separation] is very important to your assisting your attorney and also helping you with obtaining your legal goals. Many professions have different methods for analyzation as well as different procedures for dispute resolution. Some professions use collaborative approaches and work together in a team for the best result. In San Diego, as well as other jurisdictions, attorneys are in an adversarial position with the opposing side. If no agreement, both sides will present their respective positions to a Judge who will then make a decision. In the law, there is the attorney client privilege which means confidential communications. As such, all information may not be known to the Judge by either side. This is much different, for example than a surgical team of doctors who are working together and share all information. Knowing that this is an adversarial procedure will help you in your pending case.

Attorneys analyze using a strategy called “IRAC”. This stands for issue, rule, analysis and conclusion. No matter what the field of law [family law which includes custody, visitation, alimony and division of assets and debts or car accident or criminal], all lawyers will analyze with this procedure. It is not, however, as easy as it sounds which is why legal education, experience and training is needed. The first, issue, can be very complicated. A husband or wife or mother or father will come to the attorney and tell them their factual situation. The lawyer has to decide what are the legal issues in the case. There may be many legal issues at the same time. “Issue Spotting” is the first [and some may say] most important since if you miss an issue than you will not continue with the rule, analysis and conclusion procedure. The next step is to determine the legal rule or law which controls. This is also very complex since the rules consist of statutes, cases and other legal authority. It is crucial to use the correct rule of law for the issue. The next is analysis. This is also very important since the legal analysis will consider the facts, evidence and law. Analysis can be very complicated. For example, for permanent spousal support orders and modification of permanent spousal support orders in San Diego Family Law Courts, the Family Law Code Section 4320 factor is used. Under a subsection of this Code, is that the goal is that the supported spouse should be self supporting within one half the duration of the marriage and, absent other factors, the Court will set a termination date of one half the duration of the marriage. If married for more than ten years, however, no termination date will be set per Family Law Code Section 4336 but the goal of self supporting still exists. For modification motions for permanent spousal support, this can be further complicated by whether or not a Gavron order was in effect or not for duration and termination analysis. The last is the conclusion. As with the above example, would a San Diego Judge order a termination date for a marriage of over ten years in a legal separation or divorce as of the date of judgment? The conclusion is “no” given above analysis. This can be further complicated by parties agreeing to a termination date for their long term marriage and other factors.

The law firm of Doppelt and Forney, APLC has experience with issue spotting, the rules of family law, analyzing family law cases and coming to a conclusion to try and give clients realistic expectations. A free consultation is offered in their office up to 30 minutes and confidential whether you hire the firm or not. During this consultation, the attorney will use IRAC strategies for your case. There is free parking and easy to find right off the I-15 at Bernardo Center Drive.

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