How is Child Custody Handled While a Divorce is Ongoing

Child Custody Divorce Law

One of the most acrimonious moments in a person’s life is when child custody is contested following a divorce

If a parent doesn’t pursue parental rights, they will have limited contact with their kids for the duration of their childhood. Even worse, a parent’s right to visitation and custody may be taken away, restricting contact with the kids until they are no longer minors.

What is Child Custody?

The legal and physical relationship between a parent and his or her child is referred to as “child custody.” The parent who has custody of the child is entitled to raise, look after, and decide on the child. All decisions pertaining to the child’s residence, healthcare, education, and religious upbringing should always be made by the child’s biological parents. 

However, all of these problems might become controversial if couples break up. Child custody laws and the court become engaged when a child’s upbringing and custody are in question. There are different types of custody that can be granted to the parents. They can have a 50/50 shared custody, a parent can have full custody while the other is allowed visitation, or a court can award sole custody to one parent. There are many other options and ways a court can choose custody.

Child custody issues are not always required to go through the court if the parties can come to an agreement. The court will only intervene when the parties ask or when there are contentions. 

Who Decides Child Custody?

Most frequently, child custody disputes come up in divorce proceedings. The court with jurisdiction over the divorce will also decide on the child custody schedule. The parents have shared guardianship of the child(ren) and equal parental rights under the common statutory provision if the couples have children together while still married. When parents divorce, they each have an equal claim to the child’s custody.

The court seeks to make a decision that is in “the best interests of the child” while deciding which family to place the child in. A decision made in “the best interests of the child” must take into account the child’s wishes, the parents’ wishes, and the child’s relationship with each parent, siblings, and other people who may have a significant impact on the child’s best interests. It also must take into account the child’s comfort in his home, school, and community, as well as the mental and physical health of all parties involved.

Types of Custody 

Child Custody Law

Both physical and legal custody will be decided by the judge in your case. The term “physical custody” refers to the child’s residence as well as the daily care they get, such as bathing, preparing meals, and transportation. Physical custody can be divided evenly between the parents or set up so that one parent has primary physical custody and the other has visitation rights.

“Legal custody” refers to a parent’s right to make crucial choices for their child’s future, such as those regarding their education, culture, health, and religion. Legal custody may be shared by the parents or granted only to one of them. In California, the first consideration in any custody decision is the child’s best interests.

During an Ongoing Divorce, What Happens with Child Custody?

The entire family may be impacted by divorce. This is especially valid if the couple has kids. Determining who will have custody of the children and when is one of the conditions of divorce. Custody negotiations can take some time. There are some amiable divorces. 

Simply put, this indicates that the parties generally agree on all issues related to the divorce. Even though they might disagree on some issues like alimony, child support, or property distribution, they generally have a level head. They are able to resolve conflicts between people in amicable ways. Together, they are trying to streamline the divorce procedure as much as they can.

If a divorce is pending or if there is conflict, the parties should try to come to an agreement on a temporary custody plan. The temporary arrangement may simply adhere to the conditions of a permanent agreement if one exists. Finding a timetable that works for the children is the best course of action.

If the parties cannot agree on specific terms while their divorce is ongoing, then the court may mandate a temporary schedule decided by the judge. This temporary order will follow what is in the best interest of the children and should stay in-line closer to their current situation. This essentially means not removing them from schools, keeping the same schedule, and even allowing the children to have a say, especially over the age of 14. 

Who Gets the Children During a Divorce?

They can be adamant about keeping custody of the children both now and in the future. A parent can petition the court to intervene if they want to share custody or if they think the other parent might be endangering the children.

The person asking for court intervention will need to submit a Request for Order in order to ask the court for assistance. In essence, the court will be asked to grant a temporary custody order in this request. The order will only be in effect while your divorce is pending. The conditions of your long-term child custody arrangement will take effect once the divorce is finalized.

Other than contested divorces or contested child custody, then the parties will likely agree to the temporary orders of the children while the divorce is pending. If this situation is working for all parties, then it is likely that the agreement made will last after the divorce. 

Child custody issues during divorce tend to arise when one party is not being amicable or if both parents are insisting on full custody. Generally speaking, courts will give the temporary custody to the mom while a divorce is pending unless there are extenuating circumstances that would prevent the mother from having custody of the children. 

If you need help with a divorce or child custody case, call 619-299-9780 to schedule a free telephone consultation or contact a San Diego family law specialist here.

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To talk to our lawyer about your family law issue in a free telephone consultation, please call our office at 619-299-9780. You may also send us an email. We represent people throughout San Diego County in a host of different family law matters.

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