Now that it’s Legal: Same-sex Wedding, Marriage, and Divorce Law in Oregon

A Multnomah County Librarian has posted this practical and lighthearted collection of wedding, marriage, and divorce law links:

“Now that it’s legal: same-sex marriage and the law,” by Emily-Jane D., Jun 04, 2014

And maybe it’s also time to update my Engagement Ring Law blog post!

Oregon Legal Separation Packet: Samples, Not Updated!!

Legal self-help is a bit of a crap-shoot unless you have official (i.e. court sanctioned and current) legal forms or the guiding hand of an attorney, but sometimes one has to plug along the best one can.

Public law librarians not infrequently get requests for legal separation forms. Oregon has, rather had, legal separation forms, and still, sort of, does have them. But, well, read on:

Disclaimer! Warning!

  • Check with your court’s Probate Department before using these forms!
  • Please check with an attorney, or the court where you plan to file, to make sure these are the correct forms for your specific situation.
  • I highly recommend that you check with an attorney to make sure you use the correct forms and that you complete them properly.
  • You can call the Oregon State Bar Lawyer Referral Service and ask for a referral for a $35 consultation, to a Modest Means attorney, or for a lawyer who is willing to work as a coach or on a Limited Scope Legal Assistance (aka unbundled) basis.

Here is a link to the Oregon Judicial Department’s “Separation” forms packet.  NOTE THAT THEY HAVE NOT BEEN UPDATED!

From the main OJD Family Law Forms page, under “Separation”:

“Information and Packet 2 – Separation (We no longer publish these forms because budget cuts prevent us from keeping the forms current. For information on where to find court forms that are not on our website, see http://courts.oregon.gov/OJD/faq.page?#Q3.)….

OLR Blog Disclaimers:

  • The information provided on this blog is for research purposes only. We do not provide legal advice, nor do we endorse any person, product, or company.
  • It is against state law for library staff members to engage in any conduct that might constitute the unauthorized practice of law (ORS 9.160, 9.166 and 9.21). They may not interpret statutes, cases or regulations, perform legal research, recommend or assist in the preparation of forms, or advise patrons regarding their legal rights. They may, however, assist patrons in locating materials or links that would aid in individual research.

Clients and Lawyers Play the Conflict Game (Portland Tribune article)

“Tough divorce attorneys smack into wall of conflict,” by Peter Korn, Portland Tribune, October 25, 2012.

Excerpt: “This is what happens when you get a reputation as the roughest, toughest, you-don’t-want-to-mess-with-me divorce attorney in town.

Jody Stahancyk is the attorney in question, and love her or hate her, if you’re getting a divorce, she’s the lawyer you don’t want representing your spouse. Or at least, that’s what a number of people seem to think, since Stahancyk has become the prime target of a legal but maybe not so ethical strategy called “conflicting out.

Here’s how it works:…
” [Link to full Portland Tribune article.]

Oregon Divorce and Family Law Guides

Oregon family law attorneys give away a lot of free information and collaborate to make available lots of free family law forms.

The Oregon Judicial Department Family Law Facilitators offer free advice and invaluable services to many self-represented litigants, but family law can become complex very quickly when there are children, substantial financial assets, or simply whenever there is no meeting of the minds.

Family law attorneys also provide lots of information, which you can find on their websites. I’ve come across this one recently, a Northwest law firm that has a collection of articles and a guide to divorce in Oregon, all free.

Disclaimer: The information provided on this blog is for research purposes only.  We do not provide legal advice, nor do we endorse any person, product, or company.

Disclaimer: It is against state law for library staff members to engage in any conduct that might constitute the unauthorized practice of law (ORS 9.160, 9.166 and 9.21).  They may not interpret statutes, cases or regulations, perform legal research, recommend or assist in the preparation of forms, or advise patrons regarding their legal rights.  They may, however, assist patrons in locating materials or links that would aid in individual research.

Community Property Rights in Common Law Oregon – Update

Oregon is a common law property state, so what happens when you move here from a community property state and you want to preserve your community property rights?

If you are a community property couple and you move to Oregon, you need to be careful how you buy property, how you title it, how you finance it, how you dispose of it, etc., etc., etc.

The January 2008 issue of the OSB Estate Planning and Administration Section newsletter has an article on the subject, Preserving Community Property Rights in Oregon, by Kevin Tillson, Hunt & Associates, PC.

P.S. For non-attorneys – please don’t confuse common law property rights with common law marriage, another matter entirely. See the Oregon State Bar blurb:

“Does Oregon have common law marriages?
A common law “marriage” is not created in Oregon. However, if a couple is from a state that acknowledges common law marriages, and the couple meets the requirements of common law marriage of that state, then the state of Oregon will recognize the marriage of that state as valid in Oregon.”

See also:
“Debt and Marriage: When Do I Owe My Spouse’s Debts” from Nolo.com
“Marriage & Property Ownership: Who Owns What?” from Nolo.com
Here’s a link to my How to Find a Lawyer guide.

Originally posted 1/28/08 
Updated 4/12/12

New legal research guide – Vital Records

The Washington County Law Library has a new legal research guide on filing, finding, registering, and amending Oregon vital records and locating vital records from other states.  For information specifically about Oregon marriage licenses, see Laura’s previous post from June 2009.  If you are trying to locate divorce records, see my post from September 26, 2011.  As always, you can locate all of the documents uploaded to the law library’s website in our document index.

How Do I Get Copies of My Divorce Records?

We’ve been receiving numerous calls lately from people wanting copies of their divorce records.  The first step is knowing which county would have the records (where did the divorce occur?).  From there, you need to contact the applicable circuit court.  The Oregon Judicial Department (OJD) provides links to each circuit court (left-hand side of the page in a drop-down list under “Circuit Court Websites”).  OJD also provides these instructions for finding copies of court records or information on court cases.  Note, your court records may be in the court’s archives or another off-site location, affecting the amount of time the request will take.  Some courts handle record requests both in person and by mail.  See the Washington County Circuit Court Records Department webpage for information on obtaining Washington County court records (the page also provides information on the difference between copies, certified copies, and exemplified copies). You can find more information on divorce and family law matters in Washington County at the law library’s divorce/family law page.

If you are looking for information on finding copies of Oregon marriage licenses, see Laura’s blog post from June 2009.  The law library’s divorce/family law page also has information on filing and finding vital records.

New Law Library Website

We at the Washington County Law Library are pleased to announce the premiere of our newly redesigned website.  We’ve reorganized our content and added some new navigation menus.  A new navigation tab has been added for CLE information, and we organized our legal research resources into subject-area subsites (general resources, Oregon resources, subject guides, etc.).  We’ve also added direct links from our home page to the library catalog and the subject guides page.  One of the most exciting additions to the website (at least to us) is the document index, where we have compiled all of the documents available on the website.  Another exciting new subsite is the Divorce/Family Law page, accessible through both our website and the county’s homepage (from the Key Services & Information menu).  We invite you to explore the redesigned site and discover all our library has to offer.     

Transferring Ownership (title) of Vehicles in Oregon in Divorce, Bankruptcy, or Estate

The Oregon State Bar (OSB) Bulletin, June 2011, has a useful article in their Legal Practice Tips column: “Get it Right the First Time: Settling Ownership of Vehicles,” by William Leslie.
Excerpt: “Handling a titled vehicle in a divorce, bankruptcy or estate doesn’t have to be hard, but simple mistakes are made by new and experienced attorneys alike….
Here are some common mistakes made by attorneys in handling vehicles. The concepts apply equally well to boats, airplanes and anything else with a title issued by a state agency….” [Link to full article.]

Divorce Counseling for Oregon Women: Second Saturday Workshop

Visit the Portland Community College (PCC) Workshop, Second Saturday Workshop website on this divorce counseling for women program.
The National Second Saturday website gives the impression there is or will be a Divorce Counseling for Men program.
Also, don’t forget to check your local nonprofit and government family law resources for additional free and low-cost divorce counseling options.