Sacramento Divorce Attorney Discusses Joint Physical Custody
Many fathers believe that mothers always get physical custody of the children, but while that may have been true 20 or 30 years ago, things are a lot different now, especially here in California. Two changes in the law have contributed to this increase in joint physical custody: (1) a statute preventing preferring a parent because of their gender; and (2) changes in child support calculations that consider the percentage of time spent with each parent.
California Family Code Section prevents preferring one parent to the other solely on the basis of that parent’s gender. This means that courts cannot prefer mothers as the custodial parent simply because they are mothers. When one parent cannot be preferred solely on the basis of gender, the courts then consider what type of custodial arrangement is in the best interests of the child. This has meant that many fathers are able to secure more than every other weekend with the children, and for some, an equal timeshare with the other parent, allowing the children equal time with both parents.
Additionally, California laws regarding child support mandate the court consider not only the income of the parents, but the amount of time the child or children spend with the parents. Non-custodial parents can have their child support adjusted to reflect the actual time spent, which, all other things being equal, usually results in support being modified downward.
These changes have led to a rise in fathers having joint physical custody of their children. Whereas in the past fathers might have had every other weekend, many fathers now have at least one mid week visit, if not a 50/50 schedule with the children. While this arrangement requires parents to have a working co-parenting relationship, its often in the best interests of the children to have frequent visitation with both parents.
If you have questions about child custody, or child support, or any other family law matter, the attorneys at Sagaria Law can help. We have a team of attorneys experienced in all types of family law cases, including divorce, paternity, support and property division. We offer a free thirty minute consultation, either over the phone or in person at any of our six Northern California locations: Redwood City, Fremont, San Jose, Sacramento, Salinas and Monterey. Call 1-800-941-6730 today to schedule your free consultation.