Joint Custody

Types of Joint Custody

Taking Action with a Family Attorney in Riverside

In traditional divorces, mothers were most likely to receive primary custody of the child. This was due to a deeply entrenched belief that mothers were simply more capable parents. Over the years, however, this stereotype has been dispelled as more and more, fathers are receiving the portion that they deserve in post-divorce parent responsibility. This has created a shift in the way that child custody is handled.

While sole custody was almost always the direction in which the court headed, now with focus being placed equally on both parents, it is not always the first solution that is come to. Studies have proven that children benefit from having constant and consistent exposure to both parents and courts are quick to make decisions that will benefit the best interests of the children.

Therefore, joint custody is becoming more and more of a prevalent solution to child custody situations. In joint custody, parents share both legal custody and physical custody, coming to a unique outcome that allows for the child to spend time in both household and for both parents to have a say in the raising of the child.

California Family Code Guidelines

If a divorce is contested and ends up in court, the court will be able to define what the best interest of the child is, as well as frequent and continuous contact. California family code § 3020 details "safety and welfare" which is where we get the principle of the child's best interests. Some things that will be evaluated are what kind of jobs the parents have, the emotional bonds that the children have with each parent, etc. If it is determined that each parent is fit to parent and that would be in the best interest of the children, then each parent will be given partial custody, rather than one parent receiving custody and the other visitation. Keep in mind that joint does not mean equal. Simply because a court decides that both parents will have custody does not mean that time will be equal.

Does Joint Custody Mean Equal Child Support?

Both parents will be equally responsible for making decisions in the child's life as well as providing financially for the child, but the court may not decide upon a 50/50 custody. An equal split would be considered shared parenting. This is also commonly referred to as collaborative parenting or balanced parenting. Joint custody does not necessarily have to affect child support payments. While collaborative parenting would be an equal split of all parental responsibilities, joint custody parents could also have unequal child support obligations. This may be decided because one parent has a higher income or other financial factors.

At Hanson, Gorian, Bradford & Hanich, we know how difficult a divorce can be – for parents and child alike. Should you choose to work with a Riverside divorce lawyer from our firm, you can rest easier knowing that we will work to provide you with sophisticated, discrete and professional assistance when it is needed most. We know the importance a child is to a parent – you can trust that our attorneys will do everything possible to help you come to a solution that not only suits you, but also protects the best interests of the entire family.

Learn how a child custody attorney in Riverside can help you: call our firm today and request a free initial consultation!