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Definition:  RFO is short for Request for Order.   This hearing is used to establish interim orders pending a full trial on your divorce and is unique to California Family Law.  These hearings will have different names in different states.   Previously these hearings were referred to as “OSC”s or Order to Show Causes, which were posted earlier before the name change.  RFO’s establish orders relating to custody, visitation, child and spousal support, and attorney fees, among other issues.

Effect:  While these hearings are used for interim orders, if you are served with an RFO do not take the hearing lightly.    Since it is difficult to obtain a trial date which can be months or even years out, the hearing can set the tone of the case for several months or years.   Once the Orders are entered they can be difficult to renegotiate or change.   Prepare a Response to the RFO immediately on the appropriate Judicial Council forms or hire an attorney.

(c)2014

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Jurisdiction is a very complicated legal issue.  The concept of jurisdiction is taught over the course of year during the first year of law school and there are several types of jurisdiction.  There is jurisdiction over the person, jurisdiction over the property and jurisdiction over subject matter.  In more simple terms, think of jurisdiction as an agenda for what will happen in court.   If jurisdiction stood for an agenda for a meeting, it would be who is invited to the meeting.  What will be the topics to be discussed, and who will be making the decision.   For example, if the Judge mentions that he has no jurisdiction to make a spousal support order, it MAY mean that someone did not plead (or in California check the box) for spousal support to place spousal support on the court’s agenda.  This is a very simple explanation of jurisdiction.  If your case has jurisdiction problems being raised you should consult a lawyer immediately.

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