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Legal Eagle
Legal Eagle, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 5169
Experience:  Licensed to practice before state and federal court
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What rights do I have as a father to get fair custody of my

Customer Question

JA: Hi. How can I help?
Customer: What rights do I have as a father to get fair custody of my kids in CA?
JA: Has anything been filed or reported?
Customer: no
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: No
Submitted: 2 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
By fair custody, I mean would like to have them 2-3 times a week with me. The kids are 1 year and 3 years old. We are based in CA. I am also fearing whether or not my wife can take the kids out of state where her parents live, she has threatened me before with that. Both kids were born in CA and have lived in CA all this time.
Expert:  Legal Eagle replied 2 months ago.

Hello! I am a licensed CA attorney who is admitted to practice in state and federal court. I have a nearly 100% satisfaction rating (click here to see my ratings information) so all that means is that you can count on me to help today. Sorry to hear about your situation. You have complete rights to your children. As the Father, the law considers you to be an integral part of the child's well-being. This means that if you would like us to be 2 to 3 times per week and you can easily demonstrate that you are able to care for the children in their best interests (i.e. you have a job and a place to live) then you will be in good shape. Under California law, your wife cannot take the kids out of state without your permission. This would likely be considered abduction by her and this would look very bad for her in a custody dispute. If their domicile this California, and she decides to move them without your consent, and you have at least some legal custody over the children then what she was doing is illegal and you could contact the authorities in the state where she plans on living to have the children.

Follow up questions are free, so please feel free to ask away. You can also click here in the future to request me individually. If you don’t have any additional questions, were you satisfied with my service today?

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Thank you so much!I have suggested to her that her and I file for divorce without involvement or minimal such as mediation but she keeps threatening me that she wants the kids full time because she has been taking care of them over the past 3 years. But it was our mutual agreement that I would be working full time and providing for the family while she is stay at home mom. Will courts reason that we both had our role in the relationship of the kids even though mine was limited since I was the sole provider?So even if I don't have physical custody but we share 50/50 legal custody, any move with the kids without the consent would be deemed against law?
Expert:  Legal Eagle replied 2 months ago.

you are certainly welcome.The answer to your question is yes. The courts will definitely consider the fact that although you were not a stay-at-home parent nor still providing for the children. Providing for the children is not just providing the love and attention that they needed is also about providing the practical realities of life like money, health insurance, and all of the other things parents need to provide for their children on a practical basis.

And you are correct. Even if you don't have physical custody over the children if you have 50-50 legal custody any move with the kids without your consent is going to be a violation of your parental rights. Did you have any other questions for me?

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Currently my wife and I are living under the same roof and I would really like to proceed with separation to move out of the house to live with my parents in the beginning and slowly move into my own apartment. During the separation my intent is to still pay all expenses including, rent, insurance, etc. How would the court view this in CA? Does it come of as abandonment? The only reason I am doing it is because it is unbearable due to arguments and disagreements that are not productive plus I don't want to expose the kids to that.
Expert:  Legal Eagle replied 2 months ago.

That's a very good question. If you move out of the house during a separation the court is not going to consider that an abandoned. The court is going to look at all of the factors and terms of how you care for the children. The court understands that parents after a separation or divorce ordinarily are going to live in the same home. However, if you are making an effort to be in the children's lives and if you are making an effort to provide for them as you ordinarily would, then you are going to be in good shape. The court will not considered so banned in it at all. I think it's a good thing if you don't want to expose the kids to that and that may actually bode well in your favor.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Would you recommend an uncontested divorce if i reach agreement with my wife on assets, kids physical and legal custody, etc or could something backfire?
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Would mediation be a better approach or is it really case by case scenario.
Expert:  Legal Eagle replied 2 months ago.

Generally, I would recommend an uncontested divorce. CA allows for you and her to come up with a marital settlement agreement where you agree on the terms of the property, debts, assets, and child custody. Usually, these don't backfire.

Also, mediation is almost always preferred. Oftentimes, you both can find one lawyer that is willing to help with your marital settlement agreement so you don't have to hire separate representation to fight the case out on your own. Plus, the court is more likely to approve what you agree in the end. Did you have any other questions for me?

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Are there limitations on the decisions that I am allowed to make on my current investments? For example, my parents have just retired and I would like to help them purchase a property. Is there anything that prevents me from doing so?
Expert:  Legal Eagle replied 2 months ago.

Yes, there are going to be some limitations on the Investments that you make, But that only applies to marital property. therefore, if you help your parents purchase a new home with separate property ( property earned before the marriage); however, if you use funds that were obtained during the marriage, then you would not be able to do such a thing. The idea really was set up to protect women from having men try to hide all of their funds during a divorce proceeding. Ultimately, it's drafted in a manner that it prohibits both parties from doing those things.