In the state of California, the most important consideration when establishing a child custody arrangement is the l best interest of the child — i.e. ensuring that the child is safe and healthy and that he or she has continuous contact with both parents.
California judges elevate the best interest of the child above the wishes of either parent. The judge will consider the child’s age, health and ability to adapt to his or her home, school and community. This standard also takes into account the capacity of both parents to care for the child, as well as whether a history of violence exists.
It should go without saying that those involved in establishing a child custody arrangement typically prefer a joint custody agreement. However, while divorcing spouses may share joint physical and legal custody of their children, certain circumstances dictate that only one parent should retain custody, especially if the family has experienced a history of violence.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, it is often challenging to ensure that physical custody of a child is shared equally between both parents. Under California state law, the parent who does not see the child at 50 percent of the time is awarded visitation, while the other parent receives physical custody. Whichever parent sees his or her child more often is commonly referred to as the “primary custodial parent.”
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The attorneys at Bez Law Firm P.C. take great pride in offering experienced, compassionate legal counsel to residents throughout the Greater Sacramento Area. If you are currently struggling with a dispute regarding child custody, call (916) 643-9624 today.