Murrieta Child Custody Attorney
In the event of a legal separation or marital divorce, if a child/children exist between the couple, then custody and visitation of the children is to be determined by the courts either during or after the time of the legal proceedings regarding the separation or divorce.
Courts determine child custody and visitation by considering the safety and welfare of the child as well as keeping the child in “frequent and continuing contact” with both parents.
There are several types of child custody arrangements which fall under two categories: Sole Custody and Joint Custody.
Sole Custody Arrangements:
- Exclusive Custody to One Parent (legal and physical): the parent has primary physical control as well as the right to make decisions regarding the child’s residence, health, education and welfare.
- Sole Physical Custody: A parent is granted exclusive physical custody, which means the child resides with this parent, but the parent does not have exclusive decision making power over the child’s health, education and welfare.
- Sole Legal Custody: A parent is granted the exclusive right to make decisions regarding the child’s health, education and welfare, but does not have sole control over the child’s residence and supervision.
Joint Custody Arrangements:
- Pure Joint Custody: Neither parent has sole physical or legal custody, but both have the power to supervise the child and the child’s physical presence is shared.
- Joint Legal Custody: Both parents share the legal responsibility to make decisions regarding the child’s health, education and welfare.
- Joint Physical Custody: Both parents share the physical custody rights of the child, meaning both parents have “significant periods” of time with the child.
- Divided Custody: Not included in California Law Code but generally meaning each parent has physical and legal rights over the child at different periods of time (mother gets every Monday Friday and every other weekend, father gets every other weekend).
- Split Custody: A split custody agreement occurs when more than one child is involved and the parents split custody between the children (father gets custody of the son, while the mother gets custody of the daughter). Both parents have visitation rights to the child they do not have custody of.
Child custody and visitation rights should never be tackled along. Having a strong child custody lawyer on your side will make all the difference and give you the upper hand when it comes to custody battles. If you have questions regarding child custody or visitation call California child custody lawyer Eliana Phelps for your free consultation.