5 NEW LAWS AFFECTING FAMILY LAW IN CALIFORNIA

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The law is always changing.  It is an ever-growing morass of legalese and judicial compromise, morphing and oozing and touching every single person in its path.  Politicians love making new laws that deeply impact the lives of families on an everyday basis.  And California always seems to be in the lead in this way, always looking for new ways or angles that might legally favor one special interest over another.

Unfortunately, family law poses no exception to the rule of new legislation.  Several important new laws have been enacted in California over the past year that affect the players in the family law arena in major ways.

Five (5) of the more significant pieces of legislative development are:

1)      (AB 1349)  Legislation that amends Family Code §§7573, 7576, 7612, and 7613 to revise certain provisions regarding the effect of a voluntary declaration of paternity, particularly if a conflicting parentage presumption exists; the bill also permits a sperm donor to be treated as the natural father of a child under specified circumstances;

2)      (AB 458)  Legislation amending Probate Code §1514 and adding Probate Code §§2204-2205 to clarify a parent’s ability to petition for guardianship of his or her child, and establishes requirements for transferring a proceeding to another court in circumstances in which a proceeding that concerns custody or visitation of a minor is pending in one or more counties when a guardianship petition is filed;

3)      (SB 651)  Legislation amending Family Code §§ 297 and 2320, and adding Family Code §§ 297.1 and 298.7 to remove the requirement that domestic partners have a common residence to register; permits establishment of a confidential domestic partnership; and permits same-sex spouses who married in California to petition for dissolution in California without the parties meeting regular residency requirements if neither spouse resides in a jurisdiction that will dissolve the marriage;

4)      (AB 1067)  Legislation amending Code of Civil Procedure §1008 to provide that an order denying a motion for reconsideration is not separately appealable, but if the order that was the subject of the reconsideration motion is appealable, the denial of that motion is reviewable as part of an appeal from that order;

5)      (AB 454)  Legislation amending Code of Civil Procedure §§527.6, 527.8, and 527.85, Family Code §6345, and Welfare & Institutions Code §§213.5 and 15657.03 to require specified notice to a protected party of a proceeding to modify or terminate a protective order before its expiration when that proceeding is brought by someone other than the protected party.

CALIFORNIA: PROPOSED BILL WOULD ALLOW MORE THAN 2 PARENTS

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According to a recent editorial in the Los Angeles Times, there is a bill heading to Governor Jerry Brown’s desk that would allow California family law courts to determine that a child has more than two legal parents.  The law has been proposed due to the fact that family law has become even more complicated as family situations have changed.

Currently, California only allows for two partners, whether they’re a child’s biological or adoptive parents, to be legally considered that child’s parents.  Democrat Mark Leno, a State Senator from San Francisco, who introduced the bill, was spurred on by a case where a lesbian couple split up, and one of the partners subsequently broke from the relationship, turned heterosexual and was impregnated by a man.  She then returned to her former female partner but the two fought – one ending up in the hospital, the other in jail.  The daughter ended up in foster care because her biological father had no parental rights.

During the political process in California, Republicans shunned the bill, yet, it passed in both houses after attracting sufficient support from Democrats.  Opponents argue that the bill would have implications going well beyond family law courts, adding costly wrinkles in cases involving things such as citizenship, tax deductions, probate, and other matters people litigate over.  Supporters of the bill believe it would help the law to keep up with the changing landscape of a family’s nuclear foundation.

NEW BEGINNINGS FOR FAMILY: 2012

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It’s a new year during an amazing time.  Change is happening very rapidly, without and within, and if you’re not on board already, it’s now time.  There is no better time than right now, our most powerful moment, at all times.  Do what ever it is you can do to bring all good things to those you love most, and those you don’t even know, and do it all the time.  But most importantly, fill the stocking of family with all the brilliance the universe can and will provide.  Just put your thoughts, feelings, words, and actions behind it.  We at the Law Offices of Donna Santo wish you and your family a fantastic new year filled with Love, Peace, Joy and Blessings.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!  Happy 2012!!!

5 GREAT NEW YEARS RESOLUTIONS FOR FAMILY AND THE PLANET

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All right so it’s New Years and we’re all contemplating major changes within our lives.  The world and the universe are moving very fast, and so are we as individuals and family members.  And there’s no better time than now to move forward with those major changes we’ve been planning since, well, since last New Years.

We at the Law Offices of Donna Santo believe that the best changes actually come from within, and not only help the individual move forward in their personal evolution, but as each individual moves higher, we take everyone with us.  So why not make this New Years full of resolutions that make the family, as a unit, stronger, tighter, and more love filled.

1)      Touch with Love – Love is the highest vibration the universe has to offer.  So why not put it into everything we touch.  Our energy and our consciousness, which includes our thoughts, feelings, words, actions, and desires, create the reality that surrounds us.  Fill everything we do with the love that we so desperately seek.  Every time we touch something with our thoughts or words, fill them with the pure vibration of the heart, and see what this brings to us.  Place patience and respect into everything we touch.  See how our family responds, and let’s bring the world a little bit closer through our thoughts and our actions.

2)      Get Back to the Principle of Building Family First – We have all been conditioned to pursue that almighty dollar.  To improve our status in the neighborhood and the community that surrounds us.  But what would happen if we recondition ourselves to making our family our highest priority.  What if we make sure our family needs are met, that our kids leave each day feeling good about themselves and the world they live in.  We don’t need to have a lot of money to do this.  We just need to take the time to help balance each of our family members’ emotional, mental, physical, and spiritual bodies.  It will all come back to us by making our personal existences stronger and more pleasant.

3)      Place the Highest Intent in all We Do – No matter what we do, place the highest intent behind it.  Again, our reality is created through the energy and consciousness we pour into our thoughts, feelings, words and actions.  So make every moment count.  Whether it’s the mundane tasks like driving our kids to school or taking out the trash, why not fill it with our highest vibration.  At that moment, it’s all we have, so why not give it our best shot.  We don’t need to bury it with thoughts of past problems or future concerns.  Why ruin the moment?  Those are just situations of life, that deserve their own time to mend.  When we work on those issues, then we put our best energies into solving those problems at that time, and we make better, higher vibrating results for ourselves and those around us.

4)      Become the Change We Want to see Around us – Mahatma Gandhi once said, “We must become the change we want to see.”  It is true.  We don’t need to tell our spouse or children that they must become this or that.  Because, if we don’t live it, then we become the hypocrite.  Only by becoming that change, will those around us begin to learn and appreciate what we have to say.  It gives us credibility and builds respect from those we want to admire us most.

5)      Pray, Visualize, and Meditate to Perfection ­– Our intent and consciousness creates our reality.  So take the time to pray for perfection in our surroundings.  If we want to see beauty in our lives, we can begin to create it by visualizing what it is that we want to see.  By practicing meditation, we can begin to release all the negative thoughts that inundate us, and fill our consciousness with the Divine intent from the heart processes, rather than the egoic negativity we have been conditioned into.  These practices can create beauty for us as individuals and our family we hold so dear to us.

We wish you and your family a happy and healthy New Year!!!

 

NEW BEGINNINGS FOR FAMILY: 2012

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It’s a new year during an amazing time.  Change is happening very rapidly, without and within, and if you’re not on board already, it’s now time.  There is no better time than right now, our most powerful moment, at all times.  Do what ever it is you can do to bring all good things to those you love most, and those you don’t even know, and do it all the time.  But most importantly, fill the stocking of family with all the brilliance the universe can and will provide.  Just put your thoughts, feelings, words, and actions behind it.  We at the Law Offices of Donna Santo wish you and your family a fantastic new year filled with Love, Peace, Joy and Blessings.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!  Happy 2012!!!