Mission Viejo 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.
Mission Viejo Child Custody Lawyer
Child custody cases are complex. When a couple gets divorced, the court then has to decide who gets primary custody of the children involved as well as how much parenting time the other parent will get.
Determining child custody involves a great deal of information gathering and legal processes that can be overwhelming for anyone, which is why having a child custody attorney is so important.
What Is a Child Custody Attorney and What Do They Do?
A child custody attorney is a lawyer who specializes in family law, specifically child custody matters. They are hired by parents who are going through divorces or unable to come to a mutual agreement on shared parenting time. Your child custody attorney represents you in court and throughout the litigation process while fighting for a favorable outcome for you and your children. They also can provide legal counsel and give you advice on what to do in complicated situations like a child custody case.
What Is Child Custody and What Are the Different Types of It?
Child custody refers to the legal guardianship of a child. This means if someone has custody of a child, the child lives with them and depends on them to be taken care of. In a child custody case, there are two main kinds of legal custody you will encounter.
- Legal Custody
To understand how joint and sole custody are determined, it’s important to first know about legal and physical custody. Legal custody is the right of a parent or guardian to make decisions regarding the child in question, such as education or health-related issues.
- Physical Custody
Physical custody describes which parent the child physically lives with most of the time. In some cases, a parent may only be granted temporary physical custody until the court decides on a more permanent solution. However, some parents share equal physical custody time.
- Joint Custody
Joint custody is when the physical guardianship of the children and legal custody is split between parents. This involves splitting the costs of taking care of the kids and making mutual decisions together for the children regarding their health, welfare, and education. The assigned parenting time in joint custody may differ between each parent depending on the developmental stages and personal bonds the children may have with a certain parent.
- Sole Custody
Sole custody is granted to only one parent during a divorce or child custody case and gives them the right to have the child stay with them as well as make decisions for the children regarding their health, welfare, and education. In this case, the parent has sole legal and physical custody of their child.
How Is Child Custody Determined in California?
California law prioritizes keeping the best interests of children in every case, so despite what you or the other parent may try to do, the ultimate decision is up to the state court. Determining the best interests of your child include a variety of aspects, from parental stability to the age of the children and the developmental stage they are in. The court looks at a parent’s ability to care for the child, the child’s preference, and more. After taking into consideration all of the background factors of the situation, as well as what your child custody attorney has to say, the court can make its decision on custody and visitation.
How Can a Family Law Attorney Help With Child Custody Cases?
A child custody and divorce attorney can help you with a wide range of family law issues along with your custody cases. Their job includes (but is not limited to):
- Providing Knowledge of the Law
Your attorney has extensive knowledge of how the law works regarding child custody in California, and they’ll also have a great deal of experience in the field too. This can help you immensely when it comes to navigating the legal aspects of your child custody case and get you closer to your desired outcome.
- Gathering Information and Evidence
When it comes to child custody, the court requires information regarding the lives of the parents and children to make a decision that best helps the child. An attorney can assist you in collecting all of the correct information you need as well as any evidence that may be needed to prove your case. For example, if there is evidence of abuse or neglect from the other parent, this is something your attorney will make a pivotal point of your case to ensure your child stays safe.
- Present Your Case
One of the biggest reasons that parents hire attorneys during child custody litigation is because an attorney can help you present your case much better. With their knowledge and experience within the realm of law, your attorney can present your case favorably to any judge.
- Fight a Previous Custody Settlement
Child custody attorneys can also assist in fighting previous child custody settlements. In most cases, there needs to be some sort of circumstance that has changed to allow an appeal. By working with an attorney, you can identify changes in your case and collect information that will help your appeal. They will then take that to court if the appeal is granted and fight for an outcome in your favor.
- Proving Parentage/Paternity
Proving paternity or parentage can grant child custody to the parent in question. An attorney can assist you through the legal process of proving paternity, and once it is verified, the court in charge of the custody case will be notified. This weighs heavily on a decision, as if there was originally only one legal parent in the case, sole custody would have most likely gone to them.
Child Custody Lawyers in Mission Viejo, California
When it comes to legal issues involving your child, you need an attorney you can depend on. Whether you are looking for a lawyer to help you through a custody case or you want to appeal a previous decision, our experienced team at DeArmey Law is ready to help you. We pride ourselves in taking a compassionate approach to every case that comes across our desk, and we work to represent you to the best of our ability. If you are searching for an experienced child custody lawyer in Mission Viejo, contact us to learn more about how our legal services can help you.