San Diego, California, Child Custody Lawyers
It is imperative that you be able to spend time with your child/children at the initial stages of the dissolution proceeding. Often the court will look to the past schedule of time sharing to determine future timeshare.
If your spouse is not allowing you to spend time with your child/children you need to immediately file a request for order to implement an order for custody and visitation. Upon filing, the court clerk will issue orders for both parties to attend family court services(FCS) and a court hearing (two different dates). You must plan to participate in the Family Court Services mediation in person or by telephonic appearance. An attorney cannot appear on your behalf or participate in the mediation session. If you and your spouse are able to come to a full agreement then the mediator will write up the agreement. If there is no agreement, the mediator will make a recommendation to the court regarding a timeshare schedule. At court you or your attorney can request that the recommendation be adopted as the order of the court or you can request a different schedule at that time.
You should have a complete understanding of the following descriptive terms regarding custody as set forth in the California Family Code:
- “Joint custody” means joint physical custody and joint legal custody.
- “Joint legal custody” means both parents shall share the right and the responsibility to make the decisions relating to the health, education and welfare of a child.
- “Joint physical custody” means that each of the parents shall have significant periods of physical custody. Joint physical custody and shall be shared by the parents in such a way so as to assure a child of frequent and continuing contact with both parents, subject to Sections 3011 and 3020.
- “Sole legal custody” means that one parent shall have the right and the responsibility to make the decisions relating to the health, education and welfare of a child.
- “Sole physical custody” means that a child shall reside with and be under the supervision of one parent, subject to the power of the court order to order visitation.
Another term, often used by Family Court Services and the court is primary physical custody to a party. In essence this fits a situation where the child primarily resides with one parent.
If you’re going to retain an attorney you should do so prior to the mediation appointment so your attorney can prepare you for the conference.
In a divorce, issues involving children and custody can become heated and emotional. An inability to agree on child custody, support and other parenting decisions have the potential to add fuel to the fire. At the San Diego law firm of Keen and Genochio, we vigorously represent clients in child custody and visitation cases while protecting the best interests of their children.
Modification and Enforcement of Custody Agreements
Custody and visitation agreements are always subject to modification down the road. For modification of an agreement to be approved, there must be a demonstrable change in a parent or child’s circumstances.
Our attorneys have over 60 years of experience representing parents and creating co-parenting and child sharing agreements. For a free initial case evaluation, call 619-232-2217.
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