family law, Legal

Common Myths about Divorce: Legal Reasons #57

No Fault

If one spouse has an affair, the other gets everything, right? You lose the house, the car, the kids, all of it, isn’t that how it goes? That’s great and dramatic for movies and TV, but that’s not the way things work in the real world. It might end your marriage, but infidelity doesn’t always influence the divorce settlement.

California is a no-fault divorce state, which means there’s no blame assigned for a failed marriage. Unless adultery negatively impacts your finances, it probably won’t impact the division of property. One example i if your spouse drained your savings buying expensive gifts. The same goes for child custody. If an affair impairs parenting ability, it may play a role. Otherwise, this is one of the most common divorce myths many people accept as fact.


That mothers always get custody of the children in divorce was taken as a given for years. Many husbands and fathers feel like they’re at a disadvantage right out of the gate. Though there may have been a bias along the way, times they are a changing. More than automatically going with a mother over a father, the court puts the child’s best interests ahead of all other concerns.

Increasingly, the courts recognize the importance of both parents remaining in a child’s life following divorce. From a legal perspective, mothers and fathers have the same rights when it comes to child custody. Each has identical claims. And in an ideal situation—we recognize not every case will be perfect—the parent who represents the best choice, regardless of whether it’s the mother or father, will walk away with custody.




California is a community property state. This means the court views all assets and debts acquired during a marriage as belonging equally to both spouses. The law presumes joint ownership. Many people think this means everything gets shared equally during the division of property. Common divorce myths like this, however, are not the case in most situations.

Many factors go into the division of property. The court’s general goal is for each spouse to emerge from divorce on relatively even footing and to maintain a standard of living similar to that enjoyed during the marriage. The length of a marriage, resources, health, and numerous other elements play into the ultimate divorce settlement.


Food For Thought, Inpsiration

A Month of Celebrations

As July winds down, it hits me next week is my 6th wedding anniversary, and that’s how I end the month; with a bang. It is fitting that my niece, moms, sisters and father in law’s birthdays are in this month as they are all loving people who deserve nothing but the best. Then of course, there is my wife who not only represents my best sides: loving, gracious and ever beautiful.

It hits me that July will always be a special month not just for the people we celebrated, but for the continuance of healing and celebrating the ones gone, the one who will always remain close to our hearts and minds. Of course, each of these celebrations missed their presence and didn’t in a way because we got to celebrate them along with those people. There is this unending urge that they were physically here, but they were in our hearts and minds. So to all the July people, know that you are loved, you are celebrated and you are not alone.

This is just a new journey with new paths and directions, but it does not mean that the trip is over, it just means it’s going somewhere else.

Brownness, employment law, Legal

48 hour Sick Leave Law In Effect in City Of Los Angeles: Legal Reasons #56

The City of Los Angeles has a mandatory paid sick leave (PSL) law which is part of its minimum wage ordinance and which has been in effect since July 1, 2016, for employers with 26 or more employees.  The Los Angeles PSL ordinance will begin to apply to employers with 25 or fewer employees on July 1, 2017.

From an employer perspective, one of the toughest challenges of these local PSL ordinances is that the rules can change at any time. That is precisely what happened with Los Angeles’s ordinance when the city recently revised the rules and regulations relating to this ordinance. The city also revised its answers to frequently asked questions (FAQ).

Some of these changes or clarifications are important, providing information on topics such as:

  • How to determine business size;
  • How to pay employees for sick time;
  • When an existing paid leave or paid time off policy can satisfy the requirements of the ordinance;
  • How to use the frontloading method during the first year that the law applies to an employer and in subsequent years; and
  • Whether a maximum cap on accrued hours is allowed.

The Los Angeles PSL ordinance contains different provisions than the state PSL law. Employers with businesses in a city with a local PSL ordinance need to comply with both the state and the local law. For each provision, protection or benefit, employers will need to provide whichever is more generous to the employee.

More information can be found on the Office of Wage Standard’s website.

Gail Cecchettini Whaley, CalChamber Employment Law Counsel/Content

The City of Los Angeles requires employers to post a minimum wage and paid sick leave poster. CalChamber’s Los Angeles Labor Law Posters contains the official notices employers must post in Los Angeles City and Los Angeles County.

Family, Food For Thought, Inpsiration

A Weekend of Emotional Cracks

In the drudgery of the sadness, there are now some cracks of joy, laughter, a brief smile, a joyful memory of my dad and aunt. There is a slight brightening in the days when we celebrated my mom’s, father in law’s and niece’s birthday. Celebrations happen, subdued perhaps but joy comes through because our loved ones would hate so much of this sadness nonsense.

We move forward not because we have to but because the ones gone would not like us being such sour puss’s.  They were the life of the party, and would want us to behave accordingly. And so there are glimmers of lightness, along with tears, but also shared stories or creation of new intimate moments full of joy and togetherness. The weekend flew by as we celebrated some milestones like my father in law’s 65th. His joy and surprise at the party infectious, and seeing the loving happiness in my wife’s eyes as well as my sister and brother-in-law who took pains to make the event happen.

In that moment, it hit me that yes mourning is fine, but that is not the only thing to do. We get to celebrate, hold our loved ones dearly, let me know any chance we get to show them how much they are cherished. And we get better at slowing grief down. Not ignoring it, but not also not running every single moment of your life. You force new moments to put cracks in grief’s facade, and perhaps, one day, just one day, maybe, you can smile first and miss them later.

Food For Thought, Inpsiration, Journal

The Gray Life

Grief is boring. The colors around me are dimmer. I am slower. Often distracted. Unconcerned with loved ones needs and wants. Just making through the day in a daze. It’s caused damage in some relationships as the Sanjay they need is on another plain of pain and sadness. A selfish Sanjay who just looks inwards and forgets that life is moving forward without him,

Grief sucks. Continually looking at certain pictures, and replaying certain memories. I feel like an iPod on endless repeat of a song. Yet it is not satisfying but stultifying.

Grief angers. I don’t have any more words to explain to others nor do I want. There are moments I want to be left alone and others I feel suffocated in my loneliness.

Grief grays me. The color inside me feels drained and shallow. Yet I also know this self-pity has to go away. Life and Death happen. Get over it. Honor them. That’s the goal.

So I begin today vowing to be a better husband, son, brother and friend. Sitting in my room allowing grief to control me does nothing but damage me and my memory of those gone. I know they would be disappointed to see me this way. So Today, I start anew.

employment law, Legal

$12 a Hour is the Minimum Wage in Los Angeles Now: New Legal Reasons #55

While the State’s minimum wage is not increasing for California until January of 2018, a number of other cities and counties have local ordinances that mandate increases on July 1, 2017. If you work in any of these areas, at least two hours of work in a particular week within the geographic boundaries of the City of Los Angeles, you may be entitled to the higher hourly rate. Your business must employ more than 25 employees, and be in city limits of Los Angeles. To check if your business is in the City of Los Angeles Neighborhood info website.

Moreover. you are entitled to 48 hours of sick paid leave regardless of the size of your work.

You can find more information regarding the MWO in the City of Los Angeles website​.​ You can also contact the Office of Wage Standards (the OWS) at 1-844 -924-3752 or by email at