In California the primary concern of the court when making custody determinations is the health, safety and welfare of the children. The laws in California also emphasize that it is best for children to have frequent and continuous contact with both parents. Courts base their decisions on these prevailing interests.
In an ideal custody arrangement in California, both parents would have parenting time with the children each week and children would feel welcome and safe in both parents’ homes. When one parent has a history of domestic abuse, violent crimes, or drug abuse the court may find that the safety and welfare of the children may be in jeopardy.
If the health and safety of the children is compromised the court is likely to grant sole physical custody to the parent who does not have a criminal record or a drug problem. In the case where both parents have criminal records or neither parent is likely to provide a safe home for children, the court can grant custody of the child to a non-parent guardian. It is rare for the court to do so because it is presumed to be in the child’s best interests to be in the custody of a parent.
Getting Legal Help
Experienced Sacramento Family Law Attorney Hal Bartholomew can help you understand the factors for custody and the responsibilities which come with it. We can help you get through your divorce with respect and compassion. Contact Bartholomew & Wasznicky LLP today for knowledgeable and respectful representation. Call us at (916) 546-4393.