When you and your child’s parent disagree about parenting time and decision-making responsibilities, you may need the state of California to step in. Judges consider many different variables when making decisions about where your child should spend his or her time and when. However, the main priority of a judge in a child custody case is to make a decision that supports your child’s best interests.
Per the California Courts, some of the factors a judge typically considers when determining what is in your son or daughter’s best interests are as follows.
The child’s existing situation
If your child is doing well in school and otherwise succeeding in his or her current environment, a judge may hesitate to make a major residential change in the child’s life. On the flip side, if a child lacks strong family, community or academic ties to a particular area, a judge may consider a move to be beneficial to a child.
Any history of domestic violence or substance abuse
If you or your child’s other parent has a history of domestic violence or drug or alcohol abuse, a judge may take this into account.
The existing relationships between parent and child
How much time and attention each parent gave to their child so far also plays a hand in custody and parenting time decisions. Joint custody becomes more likely in situations where strong parental ties already exist between both parents and the child.
These are just some of the many factors a judge may weigh when deciding what type of living situation is most appropriate for your child.