If you have kids and are getting ready to divorce, or you are already in the middle of the process, you need to think about child custody. Every family is in a unique position and the outcomes of custody cases vary from one to the next. Sometimes, parents share custody, while others have sole custody and the other parent visits their kids.
It is vital to understand the different factors that California courts review when making custody decisions. Moreover, the way you approach your divorce could affect your relationship with your kids and your ability to make decisions in their lives or spend time with them.
What do courts review when awarding custody?
According to the Judicial Branch of California, courts focus on securing outcomes that serve a child’s best interests. The court will go over a number of factors, including a child’s emotional connection with his or her parents, each parent’s ability to take care of the child, the age of the child and his or her health.
The court will look at the child’s connection to the community and school. Courts will also take a parent’s substance abuse into consideration as well as instances of domestic violence.
Does child support affect child custody and visitation?
If you fall behind on child support, or your ex does not pay the support they owe, it is important to note that a parent cannot deny visitation as a result of back child support. Moreover, the amount of time a parent spends with his or her child can impact how much child support they have to pay. Make sure you prepare for custody and other legal issues involving your kids carefully.