Breakin' the Law?

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Breakin' the Law?

Once you file for divorce, the Automatic Temporary Restraining Orders (ATROs) of Family Code §2040 enjoin you.  Once your spouse gets served with the Summons, they are also enjoined.  Whether you are giving or receiving the divorce, make sure that you are on the right side of the law.

The first place to look is on page 2 of the Summons, where an abbreviated Section 2040 is delineated. In sum, the ATROs are an order of the court that prevent certain conduct during the pendency of the action.  The intent of the ATROs is to ensure that neither party to a divorce takes any drastic measure to dissipate the marital estate, abscond with the children, or otherwise cause significant and perhaps irreparable harm to the other party.

If you are unfortunate enough to be in a position to read the Summons, you will find that the ATROs are intuitive and logical.  Most importantly, they are a court order that can be punished by contempt (criminal penalty), in addition to civil remedies, such as pecuniary sanctions.  As such, you do not want to be the spouse that transfers all of the marital assets to an offshore account, or sells the Mercedes to the neighbor for $1.

Like everything else in family law, the best way to deal with the ATROs is to have a family law attorney assist you in dealing with them.  At Antonyan Miranda, we regularly represent complex and large marital estates which contain a plethora of potential problem areas.  Call us before you make the next transaction, and we will be happy to discuss the law, exceptions to the law, and other options.

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Timothy Miranda