Child Custody

Experienced Family Law Attorneys

San Diego Child Custody Lawyers

Additionally Serving Clients in Rancho Santa Fe, Del Mar, La Jolla, & Carlsbad, CA

Child custody is commonly one of the most difficult and distressing issues in a California divorce or between unmarried parents. For many parents, the stakes are high as well as the emotions evoked by this issue. You naturally want what is best for your child and may feel your parental rights could be threatened by the outcome. The outcome could dramatically impact the future and getting it right at the outset can spare further stress and disagreement down the line.

At Hargreaves & Taylor LLP, we understand your fears, concerns, and uncertainty when facing the issue of child custody. Because our firm’s founders are Board Certified Family Law Specialists, you can be assured that we have the advanced qualifications needed to aggressively protect your parental rights and your future with your child(ren). Our understanding of the law in this field is deep and our experience in court and at the negotiation table is extensive. Our San Diego child custody attorneys will work relentlessly to help you secure a custody arrangement that is specific to the needs of you and your child(ren).

Speak with one of our trusted team about your custody case today. Contact us online or at (619) 374-4442 to get started.

How Custody Is Determined in California

Custody refers to your rights and responsibilities in raising your children. It consists of two parts: 

  • Legal custody. This refers to the legal authority a parent has in making major decisions regarding a child’s life, such as health care, education, extracurricular activities, travel, and religious upbringing.
  • Physical custody. This refers to the legal right a parent has to spend time with the child, usually through a parenting plan that involves scheduled overnights. 

Custody can be shared between parents or can be awarded solely to one parent, depending on the circumstances. The court’s overarching guideline in deciding custody arrangements is the child’s best interests. Courts generally prefer joint custody where the child’s relationship with both parents is maintained; this is considered to be stabilizing for children. Only in cases where it is determined that it may pose a safety risk to the child due to a parent’s history of domestic violence or substance abuse would a court rule against this. 

You and the other parent can devise your own detailed parenting plan and present it to the court for approval. As long as it adheres to the rule of “best interests of the child,” it is likely to be granted. Where you and the other parent cannot agree, a judge will decide based on a review of many factors. These factors can range from lifestyle to financial situation, the child’s age and relationship with each parent, the fitness of each parent, the child’s current schooling, afterschool activities, community relationships, and more.

Our San Diego child custody lawyers are known for their legal expertise, thorough case preparation, negotiation and litigation skills, and dedication to clients. Let us use our abundant skills and talents to help you seek an optimum custody and visitation arrangement.

Set up your consultation at Hargreaves & Taylor LLP today.