As a noncustodial parent, it's hard to see the smiling faces of your children when you pick them up on visitation day, because you know how badly they've missed you. It's even harder to say good-bye to them after dropping them off at the other parent's home.
If you're in the throes of a contentious divorce and child custody process, you probably have a lot of questions -- and divorce misconceptions -- running through your mind. These questions will probably be imbued with hurt feelings, even anger, at the way your spouse has treated you during your breakup. With this in mind, here are three common child custody questions for which litigants sometimes don't have clear answers:
Any kind of child custody dispute will be tense and difficult if the parents aren't ready and willing to reach an agreement.
Divorcing parents in California will need to address key points in their parenting plans to ensure that their co-parenting relationship is peaceful for many years to come. The problem is, every parent and child's situation is unique, so it's not always clear which points need to be addressed in a parenting plan. It takes training and experience in family law and divorce law issues to draft a well-crafted and lawful parenting agreement.
In the not-too-distant past, if a father disputed a mother's claim that he was the dad, it was relatively easy for him to sidestep the need to pay child support. In the modern era of DNA testing, however, it's easy for mothers to prove who the father is by asking the court to order DNA testing.
Most parents want to spend as much time as possible with their children, but sometimes a parent's behavior will interfere with the best interests and health of the child. In these circumstances, no matter how much the potentially dangerous parent may wish to see his or her child, a court may choose to strip the parent of his or her parental, custody and visitation rights.
Many parents don't know that there are actually two kinds of child custody: (1) physical custody and (2) legal custody. As such, when an offer for "joint custody" is made, they won't understand what that offer entails until they determine the type of joint custody the offer includes.
As a father who wants to retain positive custody rights, there are several things you should do. These tips are particularly helpful if you're eager to obtain further custody or want to file for sole custody.
If you're going through a divorce, it's very likely that your children are on your mind. You want to make sure they're supported and healthy throughout the divorce process, even though there are so many changes taking place.
As a parent, you want to spend as much time with your child as you can. With an impending divorce, you know that the dynamic of your relationship is going to change. You want to do everything you can to prevent your child from feeling like you don't love or care about him or her. You want to make sure you get enough time together.