Visitation Rights for Grandparents in California

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Divorce lawyers Orange County; The Maggio Law FirmWhen it comes to California family law cases on child custody, most of the talk is centered on the rights of the children and the parents. The court focuses on what’s best for the children. Yet, there is another aspect of law that has been developing recently, which is about the visitation rights of grandparents. The California Family Code addresses the rights of the parents of the child’s parents. In this blog, we will give you a lowdown on the visitation rights of grandparents. Grandparents tend to be very important in the upbringing and welfare activities of the child especially if both the parents are career-oriented and working.

The Procedure and Law of their Rights of Visitation

Grandparents have the right to meet their grandchildren and can avail that right by petitioning the family law court to grant them visitation. The following are a list of instances when they can make such as petition:

  • The parents haven’t officially divorced and are currently married but live separately from each other. It is important to note that in such a case, the separation mustn’t be temporary or for a set time period only.
  • If there is a California or Orange County family law case currently in the court regarding the child’s custody, as long as the case is in its pre- judgment phase, petitioning is valid.
  • When the parents aren’t married to each other anymore as a result of the ending of their marriage via a court or paternity cases.
  • If the parent of the child isn’t alive anymore.

When the status between the parents is ‘not married’, the case tends to bit a little tricky, and in such cases, the courts will apply the balancing test to help make sense of the situation. This balance of test means that the court will look at the extent and strength of the relation between the child and the parent and then balances that with the relation the child has with his/her parents. If this balance shows to the court that there exists a need for the visitation right, it’s the family court’s discretion to order the visitation or not.

Parents’ Opposition to the Visitation

All lawyers generally know that nothing can be guaranteed, hence nothing should be assumed. While the above are cases where the grandparents can ask the court to grant them visitation rights. What happens in a situation where the parents oppose the visitation request? If both parents oppose the visitation request of the grandparents, the court of law will generally rule in favor of the parents. The primary assumption by the courts will be that visitation rights to grandparents will be against the benefit of the child and also because courts don’t want to supersede or undermine the rights of the parents.


How You Can Help Your Divorce Attorney Get The Best Results

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Divorce Lawyers Orange County; The Maggio Law FirmThere are two things every client of a divorce lawyer has to understand. The first thing is that all lawyers are different to one another in their approach towards cases. One lawyer, for example, can be aggressive from the go ahead. The other one might not suggest the same level of aggressiveness.  Instead, they will probably proceed in calmer, more straight-forward manner. Once you understand the fact that not all lawyers are the same, it is important for you to understand that you play an important role in the success and failure of a divorce attorney.

Confused? There is no need to be. A divorce lawyer can’t fight your case without your proper cooperation and help because at the end of the day, he or she is just a person representing you; in reality, you’ve been the victim or are the defendant in the case.


Simply hearing what your lawyer has to say isn’t by any means effective communication. The basis of effective communication depends on it being two ways. The better the communication between the two the greater the flow of ideas and lesser the chance of confusion arising that might ultimately affect your Orange County family law case. Without regular communication, you will be unable to keep track of a case that is ultimately directly about you and your married life.


Contrary to popular belief, no divorce attorney, irrespective of their fees, has a magic wand to magically solve cases.  A good Orange County divorce attorney is likely to put loads of effort into developing effective strategies for the case at hand. This method will be no different when your case is being fought. Strategy is basically the tactics, facts, tones, styles and directions of arguments that the divorce attorney will employ in court to try and turn the tide of the case their favor. The best for your lawyer to build a strategy is by having you at their side. You are the person who the case concerns and you should be aware of the direction the lawyer is about to take in your case.


There are seldom people who don’t care how much money they spend in their divorce proceedings. Almost no one has an open checkbook for lawyers to pounce on and use whenever they want for whatever they want. When the situation is like this, it means that most people like to pay a reasonable amount and expect results in that amount. In such cases it is important for clients to at the start of the case sit down with their divorce attorneys and decide a suitable budget for their case. The budget can include costs such as those for forensic accountants etc.

What To Do If You Have Been Falsely Accused Of Child Abuse In Your Divorce

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Top Orange County divorce lawyers; The Maggio Law FirmDivorce proceedings can sometimes turn out to be full blown affairs of emotions and accusations. One such accusation that should be used with care but is used rather sparingly is that of child abuse. Child Abuse is a serious accusation and can shatter even the strongest reputation to pieces. Making an allegation of such sorts is supposedly easy and yet its affects can be far reaching on the spouse and Orange County divorce proceedings.

Most of these accusations are used when the child is an infant or unable to understand the situation and comprehend his or her viewpoint. The Orange County family law court has always encouraged both the parents to stay in contact with the child but have one exception to that rule. If the parent is accused of abusing or neglecting his child voluntarily, he or she can be preventing from contact with the child for an extended period of time and often supervised.

This is what you get if you actually abused your child, but what if the claims were false? What happens to the parent that makes false accusations regarding child abuse in courts?

Curtailed or Supervised Visitation

In case of the court finding one spouse to have lied in the accusation, the court can order a punishment that can affect the falsely accusing parent’s visitation rights. They can be ordered to only have supervised and monitored visitations, or the courts can even curtail the amount of visitation time and number of visits to make sure they are brought to justice for tarnishing someone’s reputation.

Monetary Sanctions

False accusations of child abuse in Orange County divorce cases lead not only to punishments by the courts on visitation rights but it can also involve financial fines. The court can order and impose financial sanction on the accusing parent to pay a lump sum amount to the other parent. This lump sum amount’s sanction; however, cannot exceed the amount of money the accused spent on his/her family lawyer’s fees and other procedural costs to defend him/her against the false accusations.

To claim these sanctions under California Family Code 3027.1, there is no need to show the falsity of the claim in court. The falsely accused parent only has to show that he/she prevailed in the court where this claim was originally made.

What Should I Do After My Divorce Is Final? (PODCAST)

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Top Orange County divorce attorneys; The Maggio Law Firm

Welcome to The Maggio Law Firm’s PODCAST about what you should do after your divorce case has been finalized in California and the United States.


How Soon After I File For Divorce In California Can I Be Divorced? (PODCAST)

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Top divorce attorneys Orange County; The Maggio Law Firm

Welcome to The Maggio Law Firm’s PODCAST answering the questions about how soon after a party files for divorce in California can they be divorced.  


What Are The Tax Implications For Selling The Marital Residence? ( PODCAST)

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Top divorce lawyers Orange County; The Maggio Law Firm


Welcome to The Maggio Law Firm’s PODCAST regarding the tax implications for selling the marital residence during a divorce in California and the United States.  


Is It A Good Idea To Keep The House In Your Divorce? (PODCAST)

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Best Orange County divorce attorneys; The Maggio Law Firm


Welcome to The Maggio Law Firm’s PODCAST addressing the issue of whether it is a good idea to keep the marital house in your California divorce case.  


What Is The Difference Between Temporary And Long-Term Spousal Support In California? (PODCAST)

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

child support attorneys in Orange County; The Maggio Law Firm

Welcome to The Maggio Law Firm’s PODCAST explaining the difference between temporary and long-term spousal support in California and spousal support concepts under California law that any person going through a divorce or legal separation needs to understand.


How Do California Family Courts Determine Child Support? (PODCAST)

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Divorce attorneys in Orange County; The Maggio Law Firm, Inc.

Welcome to The Maggio Law Firm’s PODCAST explaining how California Family Courts determine child support.


Should You Fight Your Orange County Child Support Case?

Posted by: Gerald A. Maggio, Esq.

Top Orange County divorce lawyers; The Maggio Law FirmChild support is the amount one spouse has to pay the other after a divorce or custody case to be spent on the needs of the parties’ child. Child support cases can sometimes be a little complex in nature while most commonly they are contested in courts by both parties rigorously. There are often times though, when a spouse can fight the child support case just because they can, which ultimately causes them a financial setback. Here are instances when fighting a child support case might not be worth it.

The Case For The W-2 Employees That Have An Agreement On Visitation

In the case of those parents that are W-2 wage earners, which means that they are paid through pay check and taxes are automatically deducted from it and such parents have an agreement on the visitation time percentage between each, which can be 50/50 to 10/90, the child support issue is not a difficult issue at all and can be resolved quickly.

The amount of child support in such cases is calculated through computer software, such as Dissomaster and Xspouse, which are based on the statewide formula for child support under California Family Code section 4055.  The program processes the data that’s entered in it and gives an amount of “guideline” child support that should be paid. Such cases are simple and should be mutually decided between the parties and their lawyers instead of going to court.

Self-Employed Income Earners

The case of a self-employed spouse is usually a more complex case, with each spouse having different accounts of the self employed spouse’s income. These cases often end up in Orange County family law courts. The need for litigation in this matter is felt, because child support and its amount depends on the income of the parent and disagreement on the income needs to be resolved in court before the child support amount can be calculated.

Disagreements Concerning The Parenting Schedule

The above two examples also require an agreement or court order on what percentage timeshare each parent has with the child.  The amount of time spent with the child is a major component in calculating child support. The custodial schedule must be either agreed to between the parties or otherwise determined by the court before the amount of child support can be calculated.  The percentage timeshare is determined most accurately by calculating the number of hours that each parent has per year or month and divided by the number of hours in the corresponding year or month.