In 2015, a father of a child has equal rights to legal and physical custody of his child. California courts do not award custody based on a parent’s gender. This means the days of courts automatically awarding custody of a young child to a mother are over. As a man and father, you can argue that you deserve the right to care for or visit with your child as much as possible.
The main factor the court will have to decide in your custody case is what is in the best interest of the child. You want to make sure that you are able to convince the court that you should have substantial custody time with your child. Your first step is to contact an experienced child custody attorney who will help you develop a plan that the court will want to see in order to grant you the custody time you are requesting. These tips will help you maintain your rights as a father.
Make Sure Your Child is Performing Well in School
If your child is currently attending school, the court will look at how the child is doing in school, both academically and socially. The court will want to know how much you work with your child on his or her homework and whether you attend parent-teacher conferences.
Obtain the necessary information from the school that your child attends – as the father, you are entitled to access to this information. Bring it to your attorney’s office. Your child custody attorney may need to speak to your child’s teacher to make sure the child is making adequate progress.
Document Medical History
If your child has a medical condition, the court will want to see that you are monitoring his or her health to make sure you are acting in the child’s best interests. Obtain a copy of your child’s complete medical record. This includes your child’s mental health records if he or she has a mental health issue.
The more involved you are in helping your child get medical treatment, the more likely it is that the court will see you as acting in your child’s best interests. Document each time you take your child to the doctor, and any discussions you have with the child’s physician.
Maintain a Healthy Living Environment
The court is interested in learning about your child’s living situation. The court will ask you where your child lives in your current residence. Specifically, the court will want to know whether your child will have his or her own bedroom, share a bedroom with another child, or share a room with you. The court will also want to know how far your home is from your child’s school.
The court may ask whether your child has positive peer influences in close proximity to your home, including family members or close friends. You must inform the court if anyone else lives in the home or visits frequently, such as a significant other or relatives. The court will want to make certain that the other people who have contact with your child are positive influences and do not have criminal records. All of these are important factors, so you must be sure to maintain a healthy living environment in order to keep your custody rights.
Call a Wallin & Klarich Custody Attorney to Learn More
If you are a father, you may feel the odds are stacked against you in family law court. That is why crafting a comprehensive plan to show that you can care best for your child is extremely important. You do not have to do this alone.
At Wallin & Klarich, our child custody attorneys can help you prove to the court that being in your care is in the best interest of your child. Our skilled attorneys have been successfully representing our clients in child custody matters for over 30 years. We can help you now with your case.
Our firm has offices in southern California, in Los Angeles, Sherman Oaks, Torrance, Tustin, San Diego, Riverside, San Bernardino, Ventura, West Covina and Victorville so that we can help you no matter where you work or live.
Call us today at (888) 749-7428 for a free phone consultation. We will get through this together.