Los Angeles Child Custody Attorney
There is nothing more important than the well-being of your child. Unfortunately, the child custody process in California can pose a number of difficult challenges for those who are not familiar with the family law system. Choosing to face these difficulties alone often results in unnecessary stress and frustration that can be avoided when working with the right attorney.
Child Custody Laws and Policies in California
California recognizes two types of custody, legal and physical. Legal custody involves the rights and responsibilities in making decisions regarding the minor child's health, education, and welfare. Physical custody refers to where the child resides and who is charged with the supervision of the child.
Courts looks to the health, safety, and welfare of children when deciding on physical and/or legal custody or visitation. Under most circumstances, California's public policy is in favor of children having frequent contact with both parents after separation or divorce. Absent certain factors such as child abuse and/or domestic violence, California courts will encourage both parents to share in the responsibilities of raising the child. However, there are a variety of circumstances that can lead courts to deny custody and visitations rights and/or provide one parent with sole custody.
Best Interest of the Child Standard
In evaluating the “best interest of the child,” courts consider many factors, including:
- The healthy, safety, and welfare of the child
- Any history of abuse by one parent against the other parent or against the child
- The amount of contact the child has with both parents and the nature of that contact
- Any continued or habitual illegal use of controlled substances
- Patterns of emotional bonds and the need for continuity of the child's existing environment
- Wishes of children who are of sufficient age and capacity to form a preference as to custody or visitation
- Past conduct showing one parent's attempts to disrupt the child's relationship with the other parent
Whether you are trying to establish your initial custody and visitation orders or to modify your existing timeshare arrangement, we can help you achieve your goals. Simply fill out our contact form or call our office at (818) 740-2122 to set up a free consultation.