Due to the craziness that is COVID and the world-wide pandemic, it has been a very long time since we have been able to post an update about our Family Law Offices. We hope the pandemic helped you learn new lessons in the “Art” of gratitude, the knowledge of how precious health is, how necessary self-care and self-love are, and that you have been gracefully surrendering to the new norms and many changes that have taken place.
Office Changes; More Virtual Conference Calls
Our office has gone through many changes. Although we only work in the Rancho Cucamonga office when absolutely necessary, we have still remained extremely busy servicing our clients with their divorces and family law matters. This means distancing and quarantining in our home offices in order to stay healthy and safe, so that we don’t skip a beat for our clients! Virtual meetings and phone appointments are getting more and more common. We are allowing zoom conference calls for consultations and other meetings that would normally take place in the office. Thus saving our client’s money and time, while allowing them to meet with us from the comfort of their own home. This opportunity for virtual meetings will continue going forward until it is safe to be together again. Many law offices are allowing only phone call meetings, but we believe it’s important to see our client’s faces when we discuss these important family matters.
When the quarantine/pandemic first hit in March 2020, we were inundated with clients that needed to revisit and re-open their child support, alimony and spousal support cases due to drastic and sudden income changes, loss of businesses and jobs.
The courts then closed, and allowed only hearings for important cases that involved domestic violence and custody battles. Our family law office shifted gears to ensure we were able to help our clients with as many new cases as possible, while staying extremely busy re-opening old cases for existing or older clients.
We had the unfortunate experience of losing a client to COVID right in the middle of their divorce and custody battle. This was devastating to us, it felt like we lost a dear friend.
Divorce Cases Are Rising
For some marriages, the ability to work from home and homeschool has brought the family closer, giving them the quality time they didn’t have prior to COVID. For others, the added pressures of home schooling and the isolation and tension of remote working has pushed more couples to divorce. In some cases, when one parent has to work much more than usual on the front-line, and the other has the added out-of-no-where-load-of-responsibilities it has pushed them apart and separation has ended up being the sad outcome. It is because of this that divorce cases are on the rise. What is fortunate is that because of the stay-at-home-orders, many people have more time to gather all of the necessary documents for their divorce. Divorces took much longer when people had to juggle their crazy work schedules and regular day-to-day life with time consuming paperwork and preparation.
Gray-Divorces Have More Urgency
As you can imagine, there is a strong feeling of stress and anxiety for the senior couples that are trying to finalize their gray-divorces. With the knowledge that COVID has a high death-rate in older seniors, and with the courts placing lower priority on divorce cases that are merely dealing with money and assets, there have been a few examples where one of the spouses has contracted covid and died before the case could be worked out. This unfortunately allows the other spouse to get everything. If the spouse had not died, they would have fought for their half of the assets and money, and would have been able to assign heirs to that money and pass those things on to the family members of their choice.
As you can see, there are many cons to this quarantine dilemma, but there also some pros. At the end of the day, we are all just trying to play by the rules, doing as much as we can in the areas we are allowed, and hoping for the best.
If You Need to Re-open Your Divorce Case, Do it ASAP
If you have already re-opened your child support or spousal support cases with us, your case is in the queue with the Southern California family courts and will be handled at it’s allotted time. If you have not reopened your case to re-evaluate your change of income or job status, please do so immediately, as your case will only be looked at from the time you filed to have it re-opened, not from the time this madness started back in March. The same goes for all new divorce cases filed. If you are a high priority case with domestic violence or a custody battle with children, your case will be seen sooner.
Please hold tight, and know that The Family Law Office of James J. Kenny has your back! We have offices in Rancho Cucamonga, Ca and San Bernardino, Ca, but currently only taking phone call and video conference call meetings to keep all parties safe from illness. Call us at 909-476-2661 or fill out the contact form on our contact page to schedule your appointment today! We hope you and your family stay healthy and find a way to stay sane during these difficult times. This too shall pass.