In California, child custody is often the basis of the most longstanding disputes in a family law proceeding. Divorce is difficult in and of itself, but, when there are children involved, it becomes even more complex. Not only can battling over a child lead to acrimony between the parties, it can frequently have a negative impact on the child. The key to a child custody case from the court's perspective is to serve the child's best interests. Parents should consider their alternatives regarding child custody and have legal assistance from the start.
There are many factors that are considered when there is a child custody case in California. The best interests of the child are paramount and various considerations toward that end will be part of the process. In many cases, the parents will make their argument to have custody, visitation rights will be determined and the child has little say in the matter. However, in some instances, the child will be granted the right to express his or her preferences regarding custody. Understanding what the law says about the child's capacity to be heard is an important part of a case.
When a California couple with minor children decide to end their marriage, one of their first concerns is who will have custody of the children. Many couples are able to resolve this issue without turning to the court, but some couples need the judge to help them out. In such cases, child custody becomes more complicated than the simple question of "Who gets the kids?" A review of common child custody questions can be useful to someone about to commence divorce proceedings.
For Sacramento couples contemplating a divorce, no issue portends greater stress or heartache than the issues of which parent will be the custodian of the children. One method for alleviating some of the stress and heartache in resolving child custody issues is the preparation of a joint parenting plan. A parenting plan, sometimes called a "custody and visitation agreement," is a written agreement prepared by the parents that governs the time that children will spend with each parent and how the parents will make decisions concerning the child's health, education and general welfare. Once the plan is signed by both parents and presented to the court, the judge's approval of the plan gives it the force of a judicial order.
Ending a marriage can burden one or both spouses with extreme stress. This stress often leads one or both parties to take an unreasonable position on one or more critical issues, such as child custody or property division. Our state's courts are now using mediation to help people deal with this important change in their lives without developing a chronic hatred for the ex-partner and without engaging in wasteful litigation.
Virtually any divorce can be extremely stressful. And, if the couple has minor children, the level of stress about issues of child custody can reach painful levels all too quickly. Divorcing parents in Sacramento can use a legal device called, a "parenting plan" or "custody and visitation agreement," to reduce some of the stress.