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Top-Rated Divorce Lawyer in Pacific Palisades

If you are looking for the top divorce attorney in the Pacific Palisades, look no further than Fernandez & Karney.

Looking for a Divorce Lawyer in Pacific Palisades?


Divorce is the dissolution or termination of a marriage through legal measures. The laws surrounding divorce are different depending on where you live. These laws, along with the court, govern property distribution, spousal support, custody of any children, visitation, and child support

Divorce is required so one or both spouses may move on with their separate lives and, if they wish, marry other people. Different from annulment, divorce makes the marriage like it never happened. 

There are many reasons for divorce, from sexual incompatibly, irreconcilable differences, to a simple clash of personalities. No matter the cause, if you are seeking a divorce in Pacific Palisades, California, you need the best divorce lawyer you can find. At Fernandez & Karney, our Pacific Palisades divorce attorneys have the skills, resources, and experience to help you navigate each step of the divorce process so you can begin moving forward. While these are likely difficult times, you can rest assured that you have our diligent, experienced, and compassionate legal advocates standing by your side.

When Should You Hire a Family and Divorce Lawyer in Pacific Palisades?


The reasons you can get divorced varies by city, state, or country. Some states offer divorces that are at-fault, which means blame may be cast on one spouse, while other states, such as California, offer what is known as no-fault divorce.

As stated, divorce laws vary by state, though they will always be approached as an at-fault divorce or a no-fault divorce. While your Pacific Palisades divorce will not require a spouse to claim that any one spouse was at fault, such information may be helpful when it comes to the judge determining who will be awarded what property, who gets custody of the children, and who pays support – both spousal and child.

While hiring a family and divorce lawyer in Pacific Palisades is essential for a range of legal issues, it is especially necessary when you are going through a contested divorce. This means that both spouses cannot agree on their divorce issues and the case is taken to court, where a judge will make these decisions for them. 

With your family’s future at stake, it is vital that you seek assistance from a Certified Family Law Specialist before your divorce goes to court. Each possessing nearly 20 years of experience or more, Fernandez & Karney’s divorce and family law attorneys are skilled mediators, and whether your disagreements can be settled outside of court or through legal advocacy to the judge, we will work tirelessly until you get the results you desire. In the event that a collaborative divorce can be accomplished, we will work to ensure that the rights and interests of all parties are respected.

How Our Pacific Palisades Lawyers Begin the Divorce Process


To begin the divorce process in Pacific Palisades, CA, you must first file a Petition for Divorce, Form FL-100. The Summons (Form FL-110) lets one spouse know that the other has filed for a divorce. While this can be done on your own, it’s best to leave this initial step to your Pacific Palisades divorce lawyer. 

The notified spouse will have thirty days to respond. A third party must deliver the Summons and Petition to the other spouse. The California Court requires the spouse wishing to divorce to file a Proof of Service of Summons (Form FL-115) with the clerk of court’s office before the divorce can proceed.

Here is a further breakdown of the steps required to file for a divorce:

  1. Prepare and copy all necessary documents. If you have minor children, attach the Declaration Under Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act Form. Prepare the Child Custody and Visitation Application and file it with the court.
  2. Prepare to have the Summons and Petition delivered to your spouse. Do not do this yourself.
  3. Select who will deliver the Summons and Petition. This can be a relative or friend, but many individuals opt for their attorney to handle this. The person must be over eighteen and should not be a child you share.
  4. Give information to the person serving your spouse to help locate them. Start with the address where they live. Include a photograph of the person along with a physical description so the person knows who to look for.
  5. If your spouse agrees to the divorce, consider mailing the documents to speed up the process. Your spouse will complete their Response and the Notice and Acknowledgement of Receipt. If they refuse it, the documents must be served in person.
  6. The person who serves the Summons must sign the Proof of Service of Summons.
  7. Make a copy of the Proof of Summons and submit the original. File the original with the law clerk and ask for proof of filing.

To learn more about what each of these steps entails, please do not hesitate to contact our family law firm. When you work with Fernandez & Karney’s Los Angeles divorce attorneys, you will be skillfully guided through each step of the process, allowing you to relax and focus on building your new life.

How to Find the Best Divorce Lawyer in Pacific Palisades 


Finding a lawyer requires much thought and some research. Often, the best way to research which lawyer to hire is to ask for tips from those around you, whether they are your friends, family, or co-workers. You do not want to go with the first referral you receive, though. You should always do your research on everyone who is recommended to you. Use the Internet to your advantage and look up family & divorce lawyers in the state of California. Lawyers practice in many fields, so make sure you are only researching attorneys who practice family law.

When you have a list of between five through ten names, narrow down your list to those you are interested in learning more about and intend to contact. Keep the list to two or three names. Remember you can go back to your previous list for more options.

No matter what type of divorce/family law attorney you are looking for, we invite you to reach out to our law firm to find out whether we’re the right fit for you. Standing among the top Pacific Palisades, California divorce attorneys, our firm offers reliable legal services across a wide range of practice areas, covering nearly all types of family law matters. From legal separation and complex property division to high-net-worth divorce, international child custody, and more, Fernandez & Karney does it all. We serve clients from every walk of life across the Los Angeles area, including Santa Monica, Sherman Oaks, and Beverly Hills, CA, so we’re on standby to represent you. 

What to Know When Hiring a Pacific Palisades Divorce Attorney


When you meet with your potential Pacific Palisades divorce attorney for the first time, you should use the meeting or consultation as an opportunity to ask questions. 

You may have questions in mind, but we have compiled a list of helpful questions to help you with your search:

  • What kind of divorce cases do you usually take on?
  • Based on what you know about my case, do you see a successful outcome for me?
  • What are your fees like, and can I pay a retainer, or will I have to pay hourly wages?
  • Are you willing to work with me on payments?
  • Will anyone else be working on my case?
  • If my case will be settled using an alternative to litigation, how will it be done?
  • How much time will you spend working on my case? How many other active cases are you working on at the moment?
  • If I call or write to you, how long will it take you to get in touch with me? How flexible is your scheduling?
  • Can I have some of your references that I can contact?

When you are facing divorce – whether or not you filed – hiring the right lawyer is imperative. You should choose someone that you are confident can handle your case with care, give it the attention it needs, and give you the best possible outcome, all with the personal and sensitive nature of your case in mind.

If you’re ready to begin finding the right California divorce and family law attorney for your case, you’re invited to contact Fernandez & Karney for a free consultation. Together, we’ll devise a plan to complete your divorce as efficiently as possible and set you on the path to a better and brighter future. 

Practice Areas

Child Custody

Complex Property



Move Aways


Spousal Support




Spousal Support


Contact Us For Free Consultation

1 Certified Family Law Specialists

2 Over 50+ years of combined experience

3 Experienced with complex divorce and child custody cases