Orange County Celebrity Couple Ends 10-Year Marriage

After ten years, the marriage of Kobe and Vanessa Bryant is coming to an unfortunate end. The couple resided in Newport Beach, California with their two daughters. Neighbors and fans wonder whether Bryant will stay in the area and continue playing for the Los Angeles Lakers after the divorce is finalized.

The Bryant's marriage lasted 10 years, which is considered a lengthy marriage under California divorce law standards. Following a long-term marriage, a former spouse is generally entitled to maintain the same standard of living after the divorce is final. This is one reason that high net-worth divorces may pose a greater risk of conflict.

Options for Ending a California Marriage

In California, there are three ways to terminate a relationship:

  • Dissolution, also known as divorce;
  • Nullity, also referred to as annulment; and
  • Legal separation.

A legal separation differs in that it does not end the marriage. The couple lives apart from each other, but are legally tied for the purpose of insurance, benefits or other reasons. Both dissolution and nullity end the marriage.

A dissolution does not need to be agreed to by both parties. Either spouse can decide to end the relationship. If the parties disagree on issues, such as the custody of the children, the court will make the final decision. In order to file for dissolution in California, the couple must have lived in the state for at least six months.

If a relationship is reaching the point of complete breakdown, a divorce attorney can provide guidance on what next steps are appropriate.

Source: Los Angeles Times, "Kobe Bryant's divorce 'really sad' for kids, family, neighbors say," Dec. 21, 2011