Category Archives: Child Custody

Do I Need the "Right of First Refusal" in My Custody Order?

Do I Need the “Right of First Refusal” in My Custody Order?

During divorce, parents often establish a schedule that sets out how they will spend time with their kids. Generally, the expectation is that custodial parents will be with their children during their designated care periods. However, there can be situations when a parent may need to leave their children with someone else. Depending on the circumstances, you may or may not be comfortable with a third party watching your kids when your ex is away. If that is the case, you may want to consider adding the “Right of First Refusal” to your California parenting agreement. If you have not heard of this term, you may be wondering: Do I need the “right of first refusal” in my custody order? Continue reading

What is the Role of a Guardian Ad Litem in a California Child Custody Case?

What is the Role of a Guardian Ad Litem in a California Child Custody Case?

Keeping perspective during divorce can be challenging, especially when parents are fighting over child custody. Sometimes, when parents get very angry with one another, they may inadvertently say and do things that negatively impact their kids. In this situation, a California family court may determine that a Guardian ad Litem (minor’s counsel) needs to be appointed to provide the court with insight into the child’s situation. If you have a disputed California custody matter involving a Guardian ad Litem, you will want to know: What is the role of a Guardian ad Litem in a California child custody case? Continue reading

What Does the “Best Interest of the Child” Mean in a California Custody Case?

What Does the “Best Interest of the Child” Mean in a California Custody Case?

When a California court needs to make decisions regarding child custody, the judge will consider multiple aspects of the child’s life. Ultimately, what the court decides or the parties agree to must be in the child’s best interest. If you are involved in a California divorce or other child-related case, you may be wondering: What does the “Best Interest of the Child” mean in a California custody case? Continue reading

Key Elements to Include in Your Parenting Plan

Key Elements to Include in Your Parenting Plan


Going through a divorce with minor children will involve you and your ex making several decisions about their future care. Ultimately, how you share decision-making and time with your kids will become part of a court-ordered parenting plan that you and your ex will be required to follow. Often parents will negotiate and develop their own plan terms rather than leaving decisions about their family up to the court. When they can’t agree, each parent can ask the court to grant their request for their preferred parenting plan terms. Therefore, it will be crucial to know which terms you need in your parenting plan as you proceed through your case. Here is more on the key elements to include in your parenting plan. Continue reading

Understanding Grandparent Visitation Rights Under California Law

Understanding Grandparent Visitation Rights Under California Law


When you are a parent going through a divorce, you will have to determine how you and your ex will share custody of your kids. Although you are ending your relationship with each other, you will remain connected as co-parents. Further, your children, and by extension, you, will continue to have ties with your ex’s family members. In-law and other family dynamics can be complicated both during and after divorce and are not always easy to navigate. This can be especially true when it comes to managing your children’s time with their grandparents post-divorce. If you are going through a divorce involving kids, you will want to know how grandparent/grandchild visits will work after the case is over. Here is more about understanding grandparent visitation rights under California law: Continue reading

In the Best Interests of the Python Pet Custody in a California Divorce

In the Best Interests of the Python: Pet Custody in a California Divorce

As a married couple, Noah and April shared everything – their finances, homes, and friends. They also shared their pet. Desi was a ball python they had raised for more than seven years. Although snakes are not generally considered cuddly pets, both Noah and April loved hanging out with him. But pet custody never entered their minds until they decided to end their marriage. Since they both wanted to keep Desi, deciding what was in the best interests of their python became a major obstacle. Continue reading

Can You Have a Birth Certificate with Two Moms

Can You Have a Birth Certificate with Two Moms?

The United States Supreme Court upheld California’s decision to allow same-sex marriages in 2013. In another case heard two years later, a Supreme Court decision prevented states from banning same-sex marriage. But even so, these decisions did not iron out all of the legal wrinkles faced by gay couples. For example, spouses sometimes found they were not their child’s legal parent unless they went through a formal adoption. One reason for this is that it was difficult, if not impossible, to have a birth certificate with two moms or two dads. Continue reading

What to Do When Divorced Parents Disagree About Healthcare

What to Do When Divorced Parents Disagree About Healthcare

Divorced parents Carlos and Sarah were able to handle disagreements about raising their two children – usually amicably. But they finally reached a potential impasse when trying to make healthcare decisions. Often, decisions about medical treatment are time-sensitive. Therefore, Carlos and Sarah needed to deal with their disagreement about healthcare as quickly as possible. Continue reading

In re Marriage of McHugh When Spousal Unemployment in a Divorce Is Not Accidental

In re Marriage of McHugh: When Spousal Unemployment in a Divorce Is Not Accidental

Under California family law, both parents are expected to be financially responsible for their children. One parent often pays child support to the parent with a more significant custodial role. Courts base child support awards partially on the paying parent’s income. But what happens when that parent no longer has a job or other source of income? Even worse, what if spousal unemployment was not an accident? Continue reading