What is a Request for Order? Los Angeles Divorce Lawyer, Cathleen E. Norton, Esq., explains

What is a Request for Orders?

A “Request for Order” (“RFO”) is a new family law form that replaced the “Order to Show Cause” (“OSC”) form and the “Notice of Motion” forms previously used in family law cases.

The new form made its debut on July 1, 2012, and it is a mandatory form adopted by the Judicial Council of California.  This means that you cannot use the old “Order to Show Cause” form to make requests for child custody, visitation, child support, spousal support, attorney’s fees and costs, and requests for other orders.

A Request for Order (FL-300) is essentially the same as the Order to Show Cause form you may have been accustomed to, but it combines both the OSC and Application for Order and Supporting Declaration into one 4 page form now called a “Request for Order.”

When you file a Request for Orders  for custody, visitation, child support, or spousal support with the court clerk, it will generate a court date during which the judge will make orders.

Remember that if you are seeking custody and visitation orders, you must attend mediation before your case can be heard by the judge.  For more information on mediation, please see the post entitled “Mediation and Child Custody.”  Some counties will also require that you attend a parenting class—in Los Angeles, the parenting class is known as PACT.  More information about the PACT class can be found at cnortonlaw.com.

The most important thing to remember in filing a Request for Order is the supporting declaration that tells your side of the story.  Judges read their case files in advance of the hearing, and they often formulate tentative rulings based on the pleadings filed: RFO, Responsive Declaration, and Reply.  While you may have a chance to address the Court at the time of the hearing, you cannot rely on doing so.  Your strongest arguments should be in your pleadings, and retaining an experienced family law attorney can help you strategize your case and draft a compelling declaration that will set forth relevant facts and evidence in your pleadings.

For more information about filing a Request for Orders re: child custody, visitation, child support, spousal support, or attorney’s fees, please visit www.cnortonlaw.com or contact the Law Offices of Cathleen E. Norton at (310) 300-4021.

3 Things to Remember About Filing a Request for Orders:

1.  If you are filing a Request for child support, spousal support, or attorney’s fees, you will still need to file an Income and Expense Declaration (FL-150) with your Request for Orders.

2.  If you are asking the court to make temporary orders which will go into effect before the hearing date, you must complete a Temporary Emergency Court Orders form (FL-305) with your Request.

3.  If you plan to call witnesses at the time of the court hearing, you need to complete a Witness List (FL-321) as well as a Request for an Evidentiary Hearing so that the court is put on notice and can make the appropriate arrangements on the court’s calendar.

How to File a Request for Orders with the Court:

After you complete your Request for Orders, you must file it with the court clerk and pay the appropriate filing fee.  You can find a current fee schedule on the Superior Court’s website for the county in which you reside.  Currently, the cost for filing a Request for Orders is $60.00.  If you are filing a modification of child custody and visitation orders, there is an additional $25.00 filing fee.  After you receive the conformed copies from the clerk, you must have them served on the opposing party.  Remember that you cannot serve the papers yourself on the opposing party—that person must be at least 18 years old and not a party to the action.

Contempt Actions

If you are filing a Contempt action in a family law case, you must continue to use the Order to Show Cause and Affidavit for Contempt form.

Domestic Violence Restraining Orders

If you are filing a Request for Orders under the Domestic Violence Prevention Act in order to obtain a domestic violence restraining order, you must continue to use the domestic violence forms.

If you would like assistance in filing a Request for Orders regarding custody and visitation, child support, spousal support, attorney’s fees, etc., please contact the Law Offices of Cathleen E. Norton at (310) 300-4021.  We are here to help you with all of your family law needs.

The Law Offices of Cathleen E. Norton is a top family law firm dedicated to protecting your legal rights.  Our goal is to empower you.  Our job is to protect you.  Cathleen E. Norton, Esq. is an experienced family law attorney who obtained both her B.A. and J.D. credentials from UCLA.  You won’t find a better qualified attorney to represent you!  We have offices in Beverly Hills, San Fernando Valley, and Westlake Village and service family law cases in Los Angeles, Ventura, Orange, San Bernardino and Riverside Counties.  Call us today for a free consultation at (310) 300-4021.  For more information about the Law Offices of Cathleen E. Norton, please visit our website at www.cnortonlaw.com.

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