Irvine Child Custody Attorney
With over 100 years of combined legal experience, our team is highly qualified to provide legal services for your most difficult family circumstances.
Irvine Child Custody Lawyer
Going through a divorce or separation can be a complicated and emotional experience on its own. When children are involved in the process, it can feel even more troublesome. As a parent, you want what is best for your child.
DeArmey Law: Your Irvine Family Law Attorneys
At DeArmey Law, we are dedicated to serving our clients with compassion and diligence. For over four decades now, our team has been assisting families across California with all of their family law needs. With over 100 years of combined experience between our attorneys and hundreds of cases taken on, our team understands just how difficult your legal circumstances can get. With representation unique to your situation, our extensive knowledge of the law, and our years of involvement in family law, the attorneys at DeArmey Law can fight for the outcome you deserve. If you are going through a child custody case in Irvine, California and need legal representation that you can count on, don’t wait to contact our team.
What Is Child Custody and Visitation?
Child custody is a term that is used to describe the guardianship, care, and support of a child that is under 18. If a parent or person is granted custody, that means they are responsible for helping care for the child in question, whether it be financially, medically, emotionally, etc. In California, child custody can be assigned to just one parent or split between them. When custody is split between parents, they also must agree on visitation parameters. Visitation refers to how time will be shared, so a parent can visit and spend quality time with their child. When a divorce or separation occurs, parents can either come together to form an agreement on custody and visitation matters. If they are unable to agree, the issue will be taken to family court for the state to determine.
Types of Child Custody Cases
Because every case involving the separation of a family is unique, the law provides different kinds of custody that can be taken on by parents involved in a divorce or separation. The two main types of child custody include physical and legal.
Physical custody of a child refers to who the child is physically living with and being taken care of by. There are two different kinds of physical custody:
- Joint custody. Joint physical custody describes when child custody and visitation rights are shared between parents who are separating. The children are allowed to live at either of the parents’ homes and visit them as they please. While this means that quality time and responsibilities of caring for the children are split, it doesn’t always mean that custody is split equally. Oftentimes, especially when a young child is at a specific developmental point where they need their mother, mothers might receive the majority of custody or the child lives with them more. Joint custody can look like children living at one parent’s house one month and at the other’s the next. It can also look like living with one parent during the school year and the other during the summer.
- Sole custody (primary). Sole physical custody, otherwise known as primary custody, describes a situation where the children live mainly with one parent and occasionally visit the other. For example, a common agreement between parents allows the father to take the kids every other weekend while the mother has primary custody.
California law describes legal custody as the ability to make decisions regarding a child’s welfare, education, and healthcare. Legal child custody gives a parent the right to make decisions on their child’s behalf. This could involve anything from making medical decisions for them to deciding where the child goes to school. Parents can either share legal custody of their children, or it can be granted to one parent. If legal custody is shared, parents can agree on decisions together, but they are also legally allowed to make decisions regarding their children without the assistance of the other parent. This is where disputes are commonly seen in family court.
Types of Visitation Orders
Multiple kinds of visitation orders can be implemented when child custody is determined, including:
- Scheduled visitation. Oftentimes ex-spouses decide to create a visitation schedule together to help them, their children, and the court have a better idea of the time they will be spending with each parent. Some people like to at least plan the holidays for the year and divide them up between families. Schedules can become detailed quickly if parents have an idea of the times they plan on seeing their kids, but it still needs to be approved before it’s implemented.
- Supervised visitation orders. Supervised visitation orders give a parent the right to visit their child under supervised conditions. Depending on the agreement, sometimes the supervisor can just be the primary caregiver, while other times, a member of social services may need to be present.
- No visitation orders. A no visitation order takes away the right of a parent to visit their child or have their child come to visit them. These orders are commonly implemented when there is potential danger if the parent and child were together, even if there was supervision. This may be because there was evidence of abuse, for example.
Why You Need a Child Custody Lawyer in Orange County
Child custody matters are nothing to take lightly as they revolve around the care and well being of your children. The benefits of hiring an experienced attorney like us here at DeArmey Law include:
- They’ll Fight for You and Your Child
The divorce process is difficult enough, let alone when children are involved and there are disputes over custody. Hiring a child custody attorney that you can trust ensures that you and your children’s best interests are represented fully in court. An attorney not only listens to your wishes and the details of your situation, but they work their hardest to represent you in a way that provides the best outcome possible for both you and your kids.
- Extensive Knowledge of the Law
When it comes to the law, it’s best to trust those who specialize in it. A child custody lawyer is familiar with all aspects of family law and can navigate you and your family through the different legal processes you might go through. On top of that, they’ll use their knowledge to represent you and your needs to the court in a way that can be difficult to do on your own.
- Child Custody Cases Are Complicated
Family law cases, especially ones involving child custody, can be extremely complicated. From trying to help parents agree on visitation days to fighting over who has primary custody, there are a great many reasons you might need a lawyer to help you through your case. Unfortunately, disputes are quite common in the realm of child custody, as most parents don’t want to see their child for less time. Having a lawyer to represent you, give you advice, and guide you through the proceedings is essential for any child custody case.
What to Do in a Difficult Divorce Custody Battle
If you find yourself involved in a difficult custody battle, there are a few essential steps to take:
- Hire an attorney. The first thing you should do when you get into a disagreement over child custody is to hire an attorney if you haven’t already. Without an attorney, it’s extremely difficult to represent yourself and your wishes for your child. An attorney is also your best chance when it comes to battling an ex-partner over legal decisions.
- Put the best interests of your child first. It’s important to remember that no matter how frustrated you may be with your ex-partner or the situation at hand, your children’s needs come first. In the state of California, the court also must keep the best interests of the children in mind when making decisions, including child custody. When referring to the “best interests” of your children, it has to do with what decision will put them in a position where they will be taken care of properly and be most comfortable. The court will not simply grant one parent sole custody because they want it more. They will take into consideration aspects such as a history of abuse, financial situations, relationships with the parents, and more. The best interests of the children should always be taken into consideration first by both the parents and the court.
- Keep evidence. With some troublesome custody battles, keeping evidence of your ex’s actions (or lack thereof) regarding your legal situation can help. For example, if your ex is ignoring the set parameters you put in place for visitation or refusing to pay child support, this can be used as evidence during any other legal disputes that may come up.
Child Custody Lawyers You Can Trust
Whether you need help through your divorce or you’re going through a complicated custody battle, our team of attorneys here at DeArmey Law is prepared to assist you through even the toughest of situations. To learn more about our services and how we can potentially help you, contact us today.