Who gets child custody?

Child custody is a very important family law issue that is often part of a divorce.  Having to deal with a legal matter involving child custody can be extremely difficult.

The standard for determining child custody in California is the overall best interests of the child – according to California Family Code Section 3040.  The best interests take into consideration the health, safety and welfare of the child.  The judge wants to make sure that the child has frequent and continuing contact with both parents and there is no abuse or violence taking place.

Child custody can be petitioned by the parents, grandparents or anyone who can provide suitable care and guidance to the child. The court believes that, unless there is a reason not to do so, that joint legal custody should be awarded to both parents.

Joint custody is when both parents have the right to make any decisions regarding the needs of the child.  This includes health and medical care, education and religion.

If you are in the middle of a custody battle with your former spouse, contact an experienced Orange County Family Law attorney who will give you the one-on-one attention you need during every step of the legal process.