Frank J. Prainito

Archive for the ‘Blog’ Category

Our 4th annual Employee Appreciation Event

Posted on: October 7th, 2017 by admin

It’s another great day at HK! Our 4th annual Employee Appreciation Event is underway in Half Moon Bay…we’ve grabbed our pumpkins from Arata Farms and are ready for the Halloween season. Thanks to our partners/bosses James Hoover and Travis Krepelka for making this a special tradition for all of us!


Exciting Announcements from Hoover Krepelka, LLP

Posted on: September 8th, 2017 by admin

It’s a wrap! Thank you to the lovely and talented Esmée St James for capturing James Hoover and Travis Krepelka during our photo shoot. Stay tuned as Hoover Krepelka, LLP rolls out our new website along with more staff additions and new practice area announcements.

Esmée St James

Fiduciary Duty of Spouses in a Dissolution of Marriage in California

Posted on: September 5th, 2017 by admin

Traditionally associated with relationships between business partners, a fiduciary duty is the highest duty of fair dealing and good faith. It’s important to know that a fiduciary relationship also exists between spouses under California law. A fiduciary relationship between two people is created when they enter into a marriage. These duties apply to each spouse equally. The duty continues throughout the marriage until the marriage is dissolved and all property is distributed. This means the duty can last in situations where the division of property is not completed before the dissolution of the marriage.

What Does the Fiduciary Relationship Require?

The fiduciary duty between spouses is more than just a general requirement to deal fairly and to prevent one party from taking unfair advantage of the other. California law also requires wide ranging disclosure regarding marital assets. These laws include:

  • Access to any property or financial records related to marital property
  • Prevent a spouse for selling any household items before dissolution of the marriage
  • Inform the spouse of any interest or thing of value accrued from marital property
  • Keep all records related to marital property clear and legible

What Happens if the Fiduciary Duty is Breached?

Any breach of these duties can lead to serious consequences from a court of law. This is the case whether the breach was intentional or inadvertent. Failure to disclose information required by the court can lead to monetary sanctions in the amount of 50% – 100% of the value of the asset that wasn’t disclosed or handled appropriately. A spouse can be liable for attorney’s fees and court costs on top of these steep sanctions. In the most extreme cases, a failure to disclose a marital asset can lead to a divorce decree to be set aside to allow for redistribution of the community property.

Is it Worthwhile Discussing This With a California Divorce Attorney?

Yes. The rules regarding fiduciary duties between spouses during separation and divorce in California are complicated. If you have questions Hoover Krepelka, LLP is ready to help.

Lydia Hsu Promoted to Senior Associate Attorney

Posted on: August 21st, 2017 by admin

James Hoover and Travis Krepelka announce the promotion of Lydia Hsu to Senior Associate Attorney. Lydia has extensive court experience and is extremely well-versed in domestic violence and child visitation matters. She is fluent in Mandarin and is an integral part of our team of family law attorneys. Please join us in extending a huge congratulations to Lydia!

Lydia E. Hsu

Need Help Dividing Marital Assets and Debts?

Posted on: August 11th, 2017 by admin

dividing marital assets

Do you or someone you know need a solid strategy for dividing marital assets and debts before, during or after a divorce? Jill Blake-Burke, Senior Associate Attorney at Hoover Krepelka, LLP will be addressing this topic live in San Jose on Thursday, August 24th at 5:00 pm. Please contact for event details.


Why do I Need a Divorce Attorney?

Posted on: August 1st, 2017 by admin

In our experience representing clients through one of the most difficult times in their lives, we’ve come to realize the importance of a good divorce attorney during the end of any marriage. Whether you’re a business owner looking to protect your assets, a stay-at-home parent who hasn’t worked or provided financially for the family in a decade, or a parent who simply wants the best for your children, hiring a divorce attorney only benefits you as you navigate this particularly difficult time.

Hiring an Attorney is Optional

It’s certainly not required you hire a divorce attorney to represent you during this difficult time in your life, but it’s helpful. Couples in mutual agreement to divorce often consider their amicable split cause for forgoing an attorney, but many fail to realize how beneficial an attorney is during this process.

It’s our job to be here to help you understand legal terms and the legal facets of your divorce. Our knowledge helps guide you through this journey with ease, and we can help minimize a bit of the stress you face as your life changes completely. If your spouse is looking to drag out the divorce by contesting everything, you cannot agree on child custody, or you’re fighting over the division of assets and debts, our office can help.

Your Attorney is on Your Side

It’s our job as your divorce attorney to help you make sense of the most senseless situations. Sometimes our clients face anger and rejection during pivotal moments in their divorce, and beneficial decisions become more difficult. Hiring our firm to represent you allows us to remind you what’s at stake, make suggestions, and fight for what you want during this time.

You don’t have to stand alone in the time you feel most alone. We appreciate when our clients are amicable enough to sort things out on their own, but we still want to make sure your agreement is beneficial to you and not one that benefits the other party more.

California divorce laws are strict, and there is no telling what might occur during your divorce process. Even if you think you can do this yourself, you don’t need to do this yourself. The team of knowledgeable divorce attorneys at Hoover Krepelka is here to protect you from making poor decisions, from giving up on what you want, and from being taken advantage of. The law is fickle, and our team is here to fight the battle so you can heal.

Happy Birthday to our Founder, Robert “Bob” L. Hoover!

Posted on: July 26th, 2017 by admin

Happy 86th Birthday to our Founder, Robert “Bob” L. Hoover! Bob is one of the pioneers of Family Law in Santa Clara County and has been practicing family law for 57 years. Hoover Krepelka, LLP. would not be in existence without this extraordinary man! Thank you Bob and happy 86th birthday!

Happy Birthday Robert L. Hoover

San Jose Divorce Care

Posted on: June 29th, 2017 by admin

Thank you Ed Holt for visiting our office today to educate our attorneys about We were impressed to learn about the San Jose Divorce Care chapter that Ed facilitates. The groups meet in Campbell on Thursday evenings to cover topics such as facing anger, caring for kids, forgiveness and moving on after divorce. Divorce Care’s educational workshops are free to those who register ($20 fee for materials) and provide a healing group environment to those who need support and information during times of family transition.

Parental Alienation in California: What Can I Do?

Posted on: June 9th, 2017 by admin

child subjected to parental alienationParental alienation has the potential of damaging children any time one parent communicates in a derogatory way about the other parent in a manner that affects the involved child or children emotionally, psychologically or even physically.” If you believe that your children are being subjected to psychological abuse, it is best to consult an attorney that has expertise in child custody legal issues.

Law Enforcement

At times, it is best not to get the police involved in cases of parental alienation and to attempt to come to an agreement without the need to involve the authorities. However, in circumstances where one parent is not looking out for the best interests of the children, the targeted parent may need to contact the authorities. Whether said psychological abuse is administered in the presence or in one-to-one time spent with the child or children, the targeted parent may need to involve law enforcement. Sometimes, an experienced and skilled juvenile detective may be able to look out for parental alienating behaviors in order to minimize its trauma on the affected children. In some circumstances, child custody exchanges should occur at a local law enforcement station.

Children’s Services Agencies

Depending on the particular facts and circumstances of child custody issues, a parent may need to involve Child Protective Services. Not only does it document the instances of psychological, emotional, or physical abuse, it is a critical step in ensuring that the children are harbored from abuse. It is best to communicate in detail what exactly is happening. A parent that legitimately suspects abuse should not be afraid to reveal and explain the concerns. It may be a process that takes time, but continued contact with the staff of these agencies is critical to protecting your child or children. Reporting your concerns lets the other parent know that you are willing to protect your child or children using all available resources.

Recording Digital and Telephone Conversations

“It is a crime in California to intercept or eavesdrop upon any confidential communication, including a telephone call or wire communication, without the consent of all parties” (Cal. Penal Code §§ 631, 632).[4] It is best to consult a family law attorney when considering whether or not to record a telephone conversation. In some circumstances, a client may be advised to do so in order to protect the involved child or children when the alienating behavior is alleged extreme.

During a telephone conversation, an alienating parent may encourage or threaten a child to disrespect or disobey the other parent. Children may be instructed to ask certain questions or tell the targeted parent-specific things. Whether these exchanges take place in person, via phone, FaceTime, Skype, or in another digital form it may be necessary to obtain an order to allow for the recording of such exchanges. If you obtain a restraining order against the other party, make it clear in the order that any and all communications are subject to recording.

It May Take a Village

It is extremely important not to be shy about asking for declarations from as many supportive individuals and professionals as possible. Either side can pay  an “expert witness” to say whatever he or she wants in an attempt to prove alienating behavior, however, it is impossible to pay witnesses who are respectable parents themselves and who actively care for the health and welfare of your children on a regular basis. These types of witnesses may need to be subpoenaed.

The Truth About Parental Alienation

A significant number of alienating parents are liars. They are willing to lie to their children, the courts, their attorneys, schools, and whoever may listen in order to keep their children from trusting or loving the other parent. Alienated parents should seek legal assistance to protect themselves from the ongoing lies. The truth is in the best interest of the child or children. It is important to be honest when children begin asking questions or making accusations. A parent should provide an age-appropriate answer.

Alienated parents are generally looking to the children’s best interests and often view both parties’ involvement in the child or children’s lives as important. If you suspect your child or children are being subjected to parental alienation, there are several things you can do. Contact the certified family law experts at Hoover Krepelka for legal advice concerning the particular facts and circumstances of your family law issue.

James Hoover Selected by NADC as Nation’s ‘Top One Percent!’

Posted on: May 24th, 2017 by admin

Congratulations to James Hoover for being selected by The National Association of Distinguished Counsel as the Nation’s “Top One Percent” of attorneys!

NADC is an organization dedicated to promoting the highest standards of legal excellence. Its mission is to objectively recognize the attorneys who elevate the standards of the Bar and provide a benchmark for other lawyers to emulate.

Members are thoroughly vetted by a research team, selected by a blue-ribbon panel of attorneys with podium status from independently neutral organizations, and approved by a judicial review board as exhibiting virtue in the practice of law. Due to the incredible selectivity of the appointment process, only the top one percent of attorneys in the United States are awarded membership in NADC. This elite class of advocates consists of the finest leaders of the legal profession from across the nation.

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