California Family Law Basics

California Family Law Basics 28th Edition: Step-by-Step Guide to California Divorce, Parentage, Custody, Support, Domestic Violence and Property; With Pleadings, Procedures and Forms

Invaluable for Family Lawyers, General  Practitioners, Paralegals, Law Office Staff, Students and Document Preparers

An easy-to-read comprehensive guide from initial client interview to trial and judgment, illustrated with sample forms and declarations, and filled with practice tips, checklists, and instructions.

Key features include:

  • Step-by-step, line-by-line comments and instructions for family law forms and procedures
  • Based on experience with thousands of actual cases over 32 years of family law practice
  • Over 1,500 pages, 25 chapters, regularly updated
  • Extensive sample forms, declarations and pleadings
  • Includes detailed instructions and filled-out samples for: Petitions, Responses, Request for Orders, Judgments, Judicial Council attachments, Motions, Default Requests, UCCJEA, Wage Assignments, Restraining Orders, Pension Joinder, Income and Expense Declarations and much more
  • Time-saving practice tips and checklists
  • Time-tested effective strategies and methods to avoid pitfalls and successfully resolve cases
  • Index with 200+ family law terms

Copyright © 2020 Harriett Buhai Center for Family Law. All rights are reserved. No part of this Manual may be copied, reproduced, distributed or quoted in any way that would infringe upon the copyright, without the express prior written permission of the Harriett Buhai Center for Family Law.

Each purchaser of California Family Law Basics is granted a limited, non-transferable License by the Harriett Buhai Center for Family Law that allows a restricted number of authorized users, as follows:

  • Public and law libraries: Ten (10) users
  • Non-profit and government organizations: Six (6) users
  • All others: Three (3) users

Hear about CA Family Law Basics from one of the Center’s volunteers:

Here are some more of our Customer Reviews:

Helpful features:

“The sample pleadings are spectacular.”
-Nathan LaMotte, family law attorney

“The sample declarations with headings tell you what information is necessary.”
-Suzanna Megrabyan, family and civil lawyer

“Up to date instructions make it the most useful resource I have used.”
-Lisa Smith, family law attorney

Differences from other tools:

“Most comprehensive form guide with detailed instructions that helps a practitioner even if
new to family law.”
-Bill Ferguson, family law mediator

“Detailed handling of a family law case, start to finish, including initial client interview contact
all the way to trial preparation.”
-Tobie Waxman, lawyer

What else do our Customers have to say?

“It’s the family law bible.”
-Ani Shirinian, family law

“There’s nothing else like it.”
-Stewart Chang, law professor/former public interest lawyer

“Extremely user friendly.”
-Elaine Salon, family lawyer

“Make it your sidekick.“
-Bev Lazarus, paralegal

Who should purchase California Family Law Basics?

“MUST HAVE for newbies.”
-Sandra Nutt, bankruptcy, family, trusts and estates lawyer

“Lawyers wanting to learn family law practice.”
-Margaret Molina, immigration lawyer

-Robert Brode, family, criminal, trusts lawyer

“Document preparers”
-Bill Ferguson, family law mediator

“Everyone, even experienced lawyers!”
-Tobie Waxman, lawyer

Here’s what Law Libraries have to say:

“My patrons love the sample forms and the clear, simple language of the text.”
-Mark Masters, Reference Librarian, Fresno County Law Library

“A terrific guide for lawyers and the public… comprehensive…detailed… invaluable…”
-Ralph Stahlberg, Director of Reference & Research (Ret.), LA Law Library

“It provides a start to finish guide on some of the more complex issues that pro per litigants attempt to tackle in their own family law cases.”
-Laurel Moran, Head of Core Operations, San Diego Law Library

“There aren’t always example forms available for the types of orders used in family law, so it’s very useful to have these available.”
-Ventura County Law Library

100% of our reviewers say they would buy the book again.

About the Authors:
California Family Law Basics, written by staff lawyers of the Harriett Buhai Center for Family Law, is the product of 30 years of experience with thousands of litigants. All proceeds go to support the Center’s mission of protecting victims of domestic violence and improving the well-being of children living in poverty. For more information about the Center, please click here.

For information on and to order the California Family Law Basics, please contact us at:

Phone: 213-388-7505 ext 320