When sitting down with a qualified
California child custody lawyer to look over your custody case, there are certain facts that they will
seek to uncover.
They will look at the following items:
- Any evidence of neglect or abuse
- The history of the relationship between the parents and children
- Hugely significant issues that could arise regarding the child's safety,
education, health, or general well-being
- Current condition of the status quo custody arrangement
- The child's best interests
Before stepping in front of a family law judge, it is important to realize
that these factors will absolutely be put into consideration throughout
the duration of your
Looking at the Status Quo Custody Arrangement
The status quo arrangement consists of whatever the current custody and
visitation schedule is that the parents and children are already abiding
by. If the current custody and
visitation agreement is working out well for the family, the judge may use this as the basis
for future custody orders. This does not necessarily mean that the judge
will automatically keep the custody arrangement as is, but they will need
good reasoning as to why they should change anything.
What does this mean for custodial and noncustodial parents?
Custodial—Look at your current custody schedule and consider whether or not
it is working well. Perhaps you need to advocate for some modification
to the current status quo.
Noncustodial—Be ready to present to the court various reasons why the current
status quo is not in alignment with the child's best interests. Realize
that noncustodial parents have just as much of a right to modification
as custodial parents, in most cases.
Two Exceptions to Status Quo in California
There are two items that the family law judge cannot attempt to use against
either parent when looking at the current status quo arrangement.
Military Service Member
If one of the parents has been absent or has failed to comply with a custody
order due to active military service, the judge cannot make a modification
to the custody arrangement based solely on this fact alone. They may make
a temporary modification If necessary, but it will be reviewed upon the
The judge may not take into consideration temporary relocation or absence
by one parent when creating a custody arrangement, as long as the following is true:
- The separation from the family was only for a short amount of time
- The parent demonstrated a desire to remain in contact with the child, to
maintain custody or visitation, and that they do not display tendencies
of wanting to abandon the child
For more information on child custody and divorce laws in California, call
Orange County child custody lawyer, Douglas McKeague, at
(714) 888-4830. Fill out our
free case evaluation form today!
Additional resources on California's child custody & visitation
laws can be found on the
California Courts website.