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Common Reasons for Losing Your Child Custody Case

There are a number of reasons that could lead you to lose the sole legal or physical custody of your child as directed by a California court. In California, when starting out, both parents have joint custody rights of the child. However, when such an order is contested, you have to provide solid evidence-backed facts and reasons to demonstrate your capabilities of being the “primary care giver” and being involved in the growing up of your child.

Acting without discretion could lead to a loss of custody rights 

A judge in a California court would see whether your involvement in the rearing of your child has a positive impact on him or her. If you are someone, who is an abuser of some kind, someone who rants or loses his temper quickly, someone who doesn’t demonstrate enough interest or inclination to take the responsibility of your child, gets into an abusive relationship before the divorce is finalized or has a new partner with shady history, all these could be used to contest your custody rights or even limit your parenting time to supervised visitation or complete withdrawal of your visitation rights.

You must also demonstrate your abilities to cooperate and work in tandem with the other parent of the child in order to provide the best possible care to the child. You must set aside your personal differences and take active part in your child’s daily life like taking him to scholl, speaking to his teacher’s, taking him to his games, spending quality time with him, going for holiday breaks, even if it means with your ex-partner for the welfare of your child and showing an constantly showing an active interest towards his growth. Also don’t act out in front of the judges, the child attorney, his teachers, playmates, other parents of his friends and stop ranting and fighting with your partner always. Try not to have casual flings in front of your children so that he feels neglected.

Some very specific reasons that could contribute to your loss 

  1. Physical or sexual abuse: One of the most common reasons for losing child custody is to physically, emotionally or sexually abuse or hurt your child. If your other partner can provide enough evidence like a paper trail, circumstantial evidence and witness based evidence; you could lose your parenting rights if the judge finds your behavior and attitude towards your child inappropriate.
  2. Child abduction: Family Code 3048 of the California laws define it. Your actions may be deemed dangerous if you try to sneak the child past the other parent and take hime from one county to another or out of America. He can’t be moved as per your whims. You will have to take legal permission for doing so and provide sound and valid reasons. 

Making false allegations of abuse against the other parent, showing an affinity for substance abuse, trying to interfere with the parenting rights of the other parent could also lead to loss of your custody rights or visitation rights. Take care to act with discretion and don’t ignore the needs of your child.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

divorce_attorneyGerald A. Maggio is an experienced Orange County divorce and family law lawyer and family law attorney located in Irvine, California, serving the Orange County and Riverside areas. Mr. Maggio assists clients with legal issues including divorce, legal separation, divorce mediation, child custody, prenuptial agreements, stepparent adoptions, and other family law issues. Mr. Maggio has practiced law in California since 1999, and founded The Maggio Law Firm in 2005, focusing exclusively on divorce and family law matters.

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