Getting married is one of the most positive and liberating ways to start over after a breakup. Many individuals are anxious to resume their lives as quickly as possible after ending a marriage. So, if you want your wedding to start on the right foot, it’s important to follow the law before saying, “I do.”

It is important to check local and state rules before planning a second wedding after a divorce. If you want to be able to remarry as soon as possible following your lengthy divorce mediation in Los Angeles or anywhere in the state of California, there are several things you may do to speed things along.

How Long After a Divorce Can You Remarry?

Before both parties in a divorce process acquire a decision restoring their single status, there are some conditions to meet: the six-month waiting period and the decree of dissolution.


The Six-Month Waiting Period Has Expired

There is a waiting period of six months before you may remarry in the state of California. 

The period required to respond to a divorce petition cannot be skipped. It begins as soon as the opposing party is served by the lawyer representing the requesting party with the petition for divorce papers. Your case cannot be completed in an abbreviated time frame. However, it may not be concluded before six months.

Two other misunderstandings often arise throughout this procedure. (1) You must complete the forms and file them by the end of your waiting period. (2) You can’t file all your paperwork before the end of the waiting period.

The law acknowledges the difficulty of paperwork in complicated matters by providing enough time for the parties to submit it. Any paperwork that must be filed may be started before the waiting time ends, but it doesn’t have to be finished. 

You may rely on your lawyer to advise you on what forms to fill out and in what order. Remember that although the 6-month term is mandatory, it does not automatically end the marriage.


The Court Issues the Dissolution Decree

A quick judgment of dissolution may be obtained if a dissolution case is settled and submitted to the court before the conclusion of the six-month time limit. The six-month waiting period does not begin until the respondent is served papers (or appears in court), not the day the petition is filed.

As nothing is automatically finalized after six months, you will need to go through a trial or settlement process to get the decision of dissolution.

If you and your spouse have not reached a divorce agreement after six months, you may seek a “Bifurcation of Status” with the help of an attorney. Under certain circumstances, the court may split the case into two parts.

Your lawyer can advise you on the best divorce strategy. A bifurcation might help when one spouse wants to remarry but the other cannot agree on the divorce conditions. The court can grant the party seeking remarriage the status of a single person while reserving the final decision on all other questions.

At this point, you can remarry or file your taxes as a single person since the court has granted your divorce. However, other problems such as the division of property, custody, and support remain within the court’s authority.

After those two requirements have been met, there is no more waiting time. You will become single so that you may remarry immediately. Speak to an expert attorney if you’re contemplating a divorce and want to be sure you may remarry afterward.


Will Divorce Take Longer Than Six Months?

No matter how long or short six months may seem, most individuals will have to wait longer than that before they can be remarried.

There are situations where the legal procedure of dissolving a prior marriage will take more time than the minimum allowed by statute. It might happen if your spouse resists the divorce or if you two can’t agree on a settlement.

During a divorce, difficult decisions must be made about things like child custody, alimony, and the distribution of assets. If couples want to make progress as fast as possible, they should attempt to discuss and come to an agreement on these matters on their own.

When a divorce cannot be settled amicably, it goes to court. Having to wait for a court hearing where the judge will decide on the concerns and where each spouse will have an opportunity to tell their side of the story might add additional time to the proceedings.

The length of time it takes to complete a divorce and the length of time it takes to remarry increase in direct proportion to the difficulty of the divorce and the degree to which the parties disagree. Hiring a divorce family lawyer can help speed up the process.


How Remarriage Impacts Alimony & Child Support in CA

In the event of a divorce in California, one spouse may be required to pay spousal support (alimony) to the other, as well as child support for any children of the marriage. The question is, however, what occurs when either ex-spouse remarries. 

Impact on Alimony

The court in a California divorce case may order one spouse to pay the other alimony (spousal support) and child support (if any children are involved). What, however, would happen if either party remarried? What effect does the new marriage have on alimony and child support?

If the supported spouse remarries, the alimony obligation terminates in California. The paying spouse doesn’t need to take legal action or submit an application to end support under state law. (Cal. Fam. Code 4337). 

Suppose the receiving spouse remarries without informing the paying spouse. In that case, the receiving spouse might face a court judgment requiring the receiving spouse to repay any alimony payments made after the wedding. (Cal. Fam. Code 4334). However, alimony that is paid as a lump sum, transferred property, or made up for past-due support will not be stopped.

If the spouse receiving support remarries and does not inform the other spouse of the event, or if the receiving spouse asserts that the paying spouse is obligated to continue to pay. The paying spouse must take the matter to court and apply to terminate support. Overpayments might be returned to the spouse who is making them.

It is also presumed that alimony payments may be decreased or canceled if the supported spouse begins cohabiting with another person unless the receiving spouse can prove that they still require alimony, notwithstanding the cohabitation. When two people live together, they are said to be cohabiting or cohabiting together.

The alimony provisions of Section 4337 of the Family Code may be waived by mutual agreement of the divorcing parties. Suppose the MSA specifies that spousal support will continue indefinitely after your ex-spouse remarries. In that case, you will be responsible for making those payments even if your ex-spouse later remarries. You should contact an attorney specializing in family law before signing any agreement regarding remarriage and alimony.

It is up to the court’s discretion to determine whether alimony payments should resume if the supported spouse’s subsequent marriage is declared null and invalid owing to the new spouse’s bigamy, coercion, or insanity.

Impact on Child Support

In California, only the child’s biological parents are legally obligated to provide for the child’s financial needs. According to Section 4057.5 of the California Family Code, stepparents are not legally required to contribute financially to a child’s support. Therefore, remarriage will have no direct effect on child support payments.

Unless both biological parents do not make enough money to care for the kid’s necessities or there are other special circumstances, courts cannot consider the new spouse’s income while deciding on child custody.

Child support payments should not be reduced because of the noncustodial parent’s remarriage and subsequent addition of children. However, the court will consider any existing child support or spousal support orders when establishing a starting child support sum. However, the noncustodial parent must show that there has been a substantial change in one or both parents’ financial situation to modify the child support.

Impact on New Children’s Support

A parent’s child support payments will not change if they have another kid with their stepparent before or after remarrying. Children mostly rely on the care of their biological parents. There is no way to justify reducing child support payments based on a new kid’s expenses. A parent’s decision to have another kid is presumed voluntary and should not affect the monetary support the parent who did not want to have children should get from the court.

New marriages do not allow either parent to reduce their child support obligations. For example, if one parent loses their job or develops a serious medical condition or disability, or if parental responsibilities are reorganized, then child support payments may be adjusted accordingly.


Getting Help from a Family Law Attorney 

The best way to save time and money is to hire a family law divorce attorney to help you arrange a marriage settlement agreement with your spouse. Getting legal counsel is in your best interest if you’re going through a divorce. Your spouse is a wealth of knowledge, often has access to crucial paperwork, and may help you locate and interview credible witnesses. To be successful, though, you may need some direction.

Seeing a lawyer after finalizing a divorce in California is always a good idea. The regulations are drafted with a universal approach, but in practice, couples frequently find ways to meet their needs even more specifically.    

It is illegal to remarry in California unless your divorce is completed. While the court will normally provide a six-month waiting period, the divorce process may take longer if you and your husband cannot reach an agreement on any issues. If you live in Southern California and need the help of a Los Angeles divorce mediation specialist to guide you through the divorce process, a Los Angeles family law attorney is the best person to ask.

By hiring an experienced lawyer, you can get through the process and understand the intricacies of your case. Contact the Law Offices of Leon F. Bennett now to learn more about remarriage after divorce.