Does It Matter Who Files First in a San Diego Divorce?


Notice: Trying to get property of non-object in /home1/jwbrook1/public_html/wp-content/plugins/duplicate-page-and-post/admin/duplicate-page-and-post.php on line 324

Making some proactive moves during a divorce can give you an advantage and help make sure you do not face more of a burden than what is already involved in the process. It is one reason some people going through a divorce wonder whether filing the divorce petition first is an advantage or disadvantage. The answer to this depends, and it can sometimes be an advantage.

Filing first is rarely a disadvantage in the divorce process. California divorces are no fault divorces, which means that the person who files first is not required to prove that their husband or wife did anything wrong in order to be granted a divorce. So in this way, filing first does not present a disadvantage.

Why File First in a San Diego Divorce?

There are several advantages to filing first. One reason to file first would be to control the location where your divorce is handled. If you and your spouse live in different counties, or if your spouse has moved out of state, filing first can mean the divorce is handled in your county of residence. If the divorce is handled in your county, you would not need to travel for court hearings and other procedures.

There are residency requirements before you can file for divorce in a certain county, and before you can file for a San Diego divorce, for instance, you need to have lived in San Diego for three months or more and in California for six months. If you do not meet the residency requirement, you can file for separation first and amend to a request for dissolution of the marriage later.

When it comes to custody and support, filing first is not the final word on who gets what when the divorce is finalized. The judge decides how to award custody and divide assets based on factors set by California law. So ultimately, filing first does not affect these aspects of your divorce. However, in the short term, it can make a difference because your attorney can start working on making sure your interests are protected when it comes to marital property and custody.

In Emergency Situations

Generally, when you file for divorce, you can also file for custody and spousal support at the same time. If you need to file emergency orders for custody and spousal support, filing for divorce first could be an advantage because it could mean getting your children out of a dangerous situation faster. Keep in mind that these initial orders for temporary custody can be changed later to give the other parent visitation or even partial custody, and this decision will not likely be based on who filed for custody first.

Contact Us for Legal Assistance With a San Diego Divorce

If you are sure you want to file for divorce, you may have personal reasons to want to file the petition before your spouse does. While it may not make a big difference legally, filing first may be important to you. Before you make your decision, you should consult with an experienced divorce attorney who can better advise you on which steps to take. Contact JWB Family Law for a consultation with a compassionate and experienced divorce attorney in San Diego.

Getting divorced in San Diego County? Call us today. 619.234.6123

Schedule a free 30 minute consultation with JWB Family Law

Visitation Rights in California: What Are Your Kids Doing This Summer?

When it comes to visitation rights in California, the summer can be a challenging time. It can be hard to plan for vacations and other summertime activities for your children if you have to abide by a custody agreement requiring your child to spend time with the other parents on certain days of the week. Parents can guard their time with the children and refuse to move dates around to accommodate your summer plans for your children.

Sticking to the schedule laid out in the parenting agreement or child custody order issued by the court is important. Summer schedules can be different for both children and parents, and a parenting schedule that works for everyone during the school year may not work during the summer.

Visitation Rights in California: Asking for a Separate Summer Schedule

In San Diego, parents can ask the court to approve a summer schedule that is different from the rest of the year and takes into account some of the challenges of summer childcare and activities. If you have a specific summer parenting schedule, you should try to only sign up your child for camps and programs during your time. In some cases, the court order on custody can set out dates that each parent gets to take the child on an extended vacation.

Some situations are unavoidable, and if a parent anticipates signing the child up for a summer camp that will extend to the other parent’s time, she has to work with the other parent. For example, the parent wants the child to attend a 10-day summer camp, with three of the days falling on the other parent’s time, there needs to be some negotiating between the parties.

Visitation Rights in California: Swapping Out Summer Days

If the parents have a good relationship, they can agree to swap days and let the child attend the summer camp. It helps if both parents know of the camp dates in advance and can make the necessary arrangements in time, as opposed to one parent making the decisions and then asking for the compromise. A parent who wants to sign up the child for summer camp can also use his court ordered vacation days to let the child attend the full length of the camp on his parenting time.

Visitation Rights in California: Cooperating When You Have To Share Child Custody

While it is not impossible, swapping vacation and other parenting time with the other parent takes a great deal of cooperation. Remember that if you do not have other plans, being flexible with your time can help you down the line when you want to exchange a few days with the other parent.

At the end of the day, the custody order has to be followed, even when it comes to summer camps and other activities, and working together can save everyone a lot of stress. Parents should also try to work out any scheduling conflicts among themselves without involving the children.

Contact Us for Legal Assistance

Child custody and visitation issues are some of the most difficult to deal with during a divorce. Working for the best interest of the child should always be the goal of both parents. If you have custody issues and need to seek modification on a prior custody order, you should contact a compassionate and experienced child custody lawyer in San Diego at JWB Family Law.

Schedule a free 30 minute consultation with JWB Family Law

Is Sole Legal Custody Right in Your San Diego Divorce?

It is never an easy decision to pursue divorce, and the process can often be complex and confusing especially when children are involved in the divorce process. With many high-profile celebrities battling over children in court during their divorce, custody of children can be a cloudy issue.

Generally, California courts prefer that parents come to an agreement about custody in which they share custodial roles. However, when parents cannot agree, then courts will step in and make custody decisions based on California law expressing factors for a court to consider in determining the best interests of the child. This will result in a custody arrangement that specifies both physical and legal custody terms.

What Is the Difference Between Physical and Legal Custody in San Diego Divorce?

Physical custody refers to where the children spend their time. A judge can grant either sole or joint physical custody, which will determine where children spend their time. Even when a judge grants joint physical custody, it can often be difficult to split time directly in half and children will often end up spending at least a little more time with one parent, who is sometimes referred to as the custodial parent.

Legal custody refers to a parent’s right to make important decisions in the child’s life about things like:

  • School
  • Medical needs
  • Extracurricular activities, including summer activities
  • Religious activities
  • Where the child will live

Legal custody can also be sole or joint. With joint legal custody, parents will share the ability to make these decisions. In cases where sole legal custody is granted, only one parent will make these decisions and does not need the approval of the other parent.

When Is Sole Legal Custody Awarded in a San Diego Divorce?

California courts prefer that parents share important decisions about their children. However, that may not always be practical given the individual circumstances of your divorce. Courts may award sole legal custody in a variety of situations that might include cases where one parent has a radical approach to health care or religion, or where one parent is substantially absent from a child’s life.

Generally, courts reserve awarding sole legal custody for situations where one parent is potentially unfit to make important legal decisions about their child. In all cases, courts will refer to standards that help them determine what type of custody is in the best interest of the child.

Is Sole Legal Custody Right for You?

Determining whether sole legal custody is the right option for you and your children will depend on your unique circumstances. Your California divorce attorney can help you evaluate various factors that can help you determine whether sole legal custody might be appropriate. However, the decision to pursue sole legal or sole physical custody is ultimately up to you.

If you are considering divorce or have already made the difficult decision to pursue divorce and have questions or concerns about how custody may be decided in San Diego County, contact JWB Family Law to schedule a free consultation where you can find out more information about custody determinations and what they might mean for you.

Getting divorced in San Diego County? Call us today. 619.234.6123

Schedule a free 30 minute consultation with JWB Family Law

How to Change Spousal Support or Alimony in a San Diego Divorce

Spousal support, also known as Alimony, can be a difficult issue during divorce. In California, there are two main types of spousal support: temporary and permanent.

Temporary spousal support, sometimes called pendente lite support, is a type of spousal support awarded while divorce proceedings are pending before a final judgment is entered. Permanent spousal support is spousal support awarded as part of a divorce settlement that is more long-term, though not necessarily forever. The length of a marriage will often determine the length of time an award of alimony will remain in place, though several factors may allow you to modify a support order.

How Can You Change Spousal support in a San Diego Divorce?

Having a support order modified, either one that is temporary or permanent, usually begins by requesting the court determine whether you meet the criteria for modification. Of course, if you and your spouse/former spouse can agree on new spousal support terms, you can submit those terms to the court for approval without requesting a modification determination from the court.

Generally, when a significant change occurs regarding any of the factors a judge used to determine alimony in the first place it may be possible to successfully modify spousal support. Such factors include:

  • The paying spouse has had an involuntary reduction in pay or has lost his or her job
  • The receiving spouse no longer requires spousal support
  • The receiving spouse remarries or cohabitates in a way where he or she is no longer entitled to receive support
  • The paying spouse is in a position where he or she is unable to pay support temporarily, such as being in jail
  • The receiving spouse does not make a good faith effort to become self-supporting

Recently, California courts have moved toward the idea that spousal support is eventually meant to come to an end. In other words, California law expects a spouse receiving support to work towards being self-supporting as soon as possible, regardless of the type of support order in place.

If the person requesting the modification is the spouse required to pay alimony, the burden of proving a change in circumstances will typically be on him or her. Arguing for modification can be a complex process, especially when trying to demonstrate cohabitation or lack of good faith. An experienced family law attorney can help you argue your case.

Can All Support Orders Be Modified?

No, not all support orders can be modified. California law makes spousal support orders where written or oral agreements regarding these orders prohibit modification. California law also prevents alimony orders that have been given a termination date from being extended unless the court has reserved the right to do so for orders not specifically preventing modification.

Contact a San Diego Divorce Lawyer

Alimony can be a complicated issue, but it is an important issue to understand for both parties. An experienced divorce attorney can help you understand how spousal support can affect you in a San Diego divorce, and can even help you understand some of the potential tax consequences that may accompany alimony.

If you are considering divorce or have already made the difficult decision to pursue divorce and have questions, contact JWB Family Law to schedule a free consultation where you can find out more information about the San Diego County divorce process and how spousal support might affect you.

Getting divorced in San Diego County? Call us today. 619.234.6123

Schedule a free 30 minute consultation with JWB Family Law

Can Family Law Attorneys in San Diego Help Me Keep My Home?

There are many challenging questions that arise during a California divorce. One of the most common questions people have is about division of property, especially whether family law attorneys in San Diego can help you keep your house.

Sometimes spouses both want out of the house, possibly because they cannot afford to maintain it on their own. Other times, one spouse may feel he or she has financially invested a great deal in the marital home and may not have the resources to find another residence. If young children are involved, one spouse may want to remain in the home with the children so as not to allow the divorce to become too disruptive for their kids. A spouse might also feel a strong emotional attachment to the marital home.

Whatever your reasoning, whether family law attorneys in San Diego can help you keep your home can be a difficult question. While California’s community property laws may seem straightforward in that they divide marital assets and marital debts equally between both spouses, the answer as to who gets the house in a divorce can be a little more complex since it is far more difficult to split a house in two. Depending on the unique circumstances of your divorce, the following options might be available to you regarding your house.

How Family Law Attorneys in San Diego Can Help: Buying Out Your Spouse

If one spouse wants to take full ownership of the marital home and the other spouse agrees, the spouse wishing to keep the home can buy out the spouse’s share of the marital home. This will usually involve the spouse buying the home to refinance the home to ensure the selling spouse’s name is removed from the mortgage. Depending on the dynamics of the buyout process, there could be tax consequences involved in the transaction for both spouses. These can include home mortgage interest deductions and tax concerns involving spousal support, depending on how a court or the parties structures the buyout.

How Family Law Attorneys in San Diego Can Help: Sell the House and Divide the Profits

In scenarios where neither spouse has an interest in staying in the marital home, either for financial or other reasons, spouses can agree to sell the home and divide the profits from the sale. Basically, both spouses will go through the sale process, pay off any debt related to the home from the sale, and split any remaining profits evenly.  It is also not unusual for the net sale proceeds of the home to be placed in a trust account pending an agreement for paying all the community property debts such that the debts will be paid directly from the trust account before the net sale proceeds are split evenly.  This method insures each party pays their one-half of the community property debts and obligations.

How Family Law Attorneys in San Diego Can Help: Deferred Sale

In some cases where spouses share children and it is financially practical, San Diego courts will allow a deferred sale of the marital home. In this scenario, designed to lessen the impact of divorce on children, both spouses will remain on the title to the home for a specified period of time where the custodial parent will retain exclusive use of the home. The time period set by the court will vary depending on individual circumstances, and after the time period has expired, both spouses will sell the home.

Get Legal Help

There are many considerations that go into determining which process is right for you. Experienced family law attorneys in San Diego can help you understand more about those considerations. If you are thinking about divorce or have made the difficult decision to move forward with it in San Diego County, contact JWB Family Law to schedule a free consultation where you can find out more about what the divorce process entails and what options might be available to you regarding division of assets.

Getting divorced in San Diego County? Call us today. 619.234.6123

Schedule a free 30 minute consultation with JWB Family Law

Dividing a Business in Your Divorce in San Diego County

Dividing assets as part of a divorce can affect the divorcing couple in many ways, especially if the asset is a business that forms a large part of the couple’s income. Both spouses may want to keep the business, but not necessarily continue co-owning it with each other. Whether a business is divided as part of a San Diego County divorce depends on how it is characterized.

Is the Business Community or Separate Property?

In California, assets that a couple acquires during a marriage are generally classified as community property, unless they fit an exception. Assets are considered separate property of a spouse when they were acquired before the marriage, or during the marriage through an inheritance. Community property is generally divided equally between the divorcing couple, while separate property is kept by the spouse who owned it or inherited it.

A business can be characterized as either community or separate property depending on how it was acquired. If one spouse inherited the family business from his parents, then this business is not likely to be divided as community property. A court can sometimes decide that a business has been changed from separate property to community property by the actions of the couple during the marriage, like mixing separate and community property funds.

If the business was started or purchased within the marriage by the couple, they each have a stake in it. Even if only one spouse is part of another business with third party partners, the other spouse may be entitled to a share of that business if the spouse’s share in the business is considered community property.

Valuing a Business for Division During a San Diego County Divorce

Businesses do not always have to be sold as part of a divorce. If one spouse can show that she has a primary role in running the business—or that the business depends on her professional connections and certifications that the other spouse does not have—a court can award that spouse the business. However, the spouse who is allowed to continue operating a business that is considered community property has to pay out the other spouse.

In order to be divided or for one spouse to pay out the other, a business has to be valued by specific experts, business valuation or forensic accountants, who can take the business assets into consideration, as well as future earnings, and even the goodwill the business has built up and determine the marital value of the business. Once the marital value of the business is determined, the spouse who is keeping the business can compensate the other spouse for his or her share.

Keeping the Business Jointly Owned

In some cases, if the spouses want to keep working together despite their divorce, they may be able to do so if they can reach an agreement. They would have to reach a new business agreement and be clear on each person’s new role and ownership in the business. It would also be wise to have an attorney draft provisions into the agreement specifically on how the business is to be treated in the future if, for example, one of the spouses gets married.

Contact an Attorney Experienced When Getting Divorced in San Diego County

Dividing a business during a divorce can be a difficult part of the divorce because so much is often at stake, especially if the business is profitable and has been the main source of income for the couple.

If you are going through a divorce, you need an experienced San Diego County divorce attorney who will look out for your interests, address all the issues that arise when dealing with a business during a divorce, and fight for you to get what you deserve. Contact an experienced San Diego divorce attorney from San Diego’s JWB Family Law today.

Getting divorced in San Diego County? Call us today. 619.234.6123

Schedule a free 30 minute consultation with JWB Family Law

New Year’s Resolutions for Separating Spouses To Ensure A Smooth and Efficient Transition

Sometimes couples who are planning on separating or divorcing prefer to wait out the holiday season and file for separation and divorce in the New Year.  This can be because of financial reasons, or because they do not want to tell their children or other family members that the marriage is about to end.

Spouses who know they are going to separate in the New Year can make some New Year resolutions in preparation for the new phase of their lives.  The following are some suggestions for New Year’s resolutions that can assist you make a smoother, more efficient transition.

Seeking joint and individual help

Separating from a spouse can signal the end of a marriage and can be very difficult to handle for some people.  For others, a separation can mean the end of a difficult or abusive marriage and can come with a certain sense of freedom.  It is important for separating spouses to seek individual help if they need it and resolve to take care of themselves.  Getting involved in community events, exercising, eating well, volunteering, spending time with friends and loved ones, or speaking to a counsellor or therapist can be ways to stay positive and avoid depression.

Look at Your Finances

Making a decision to analyze finances and plan for life after a separation can help separating spouses avoid financial trouble in the New Year.  If the spouses have joint bills or debts, they may need to make decisions on how these will be handled while they are living apart.  Individually, spouses should make resolutions to make budgets and stick to them, make plans for income after a divorce, and to become more financially literate.

Work Together For The Children

A separation is not likely to be easy for children, especially if they are young and cannot understand why their parents are not going to be living together.  Parents should resolve to work together and put aside their personal problems in order to co-parent.  Parents should especially resolve to not maliciously restrict visitation, fight in front of their children or say negative things about each other to the children.

What is the goal of the separation?

This is an important question that separating spouses should ask themselves, and ideally they should be on the same page with their answers.  Is the separation in preparation for a divorce, or is it to seek marital counselling to try and save the marriage?  If the goal is divorce, spouses should resolve to make a clean break and try not to keep making short lived reconciliation attempts that may prolong the pain for all involved.  If the goal is to work on the marriage, spouses should purpose to give it their best shot.

Seeking Legal Assistance

If you are about to go through a separation and want to consider all your options with regards to child custody and financial matters, you need to consult an experienced family law attorney.  Contact the Law Offices of Jane Wesley Brooks to speak with an experienced family law attorney in San Diego County.

Getting divorced in San Diego County? Call us today. 619.234.6123

Schedule a free 30 minute consultation with JWB Family Law

Going Through A Divorce And Avoiding Financial Pitfalls During The Holiday Season

The holiday season can be a great time to share with, appreciate, and spend time with your loved ones.  It can also be a great time of stress for some when they consider how much they have to spend, either on travel, gifts, and other holiday related expenses. The average U.S. household is expected to spend around $1,121 on gifts for the holidays in 2016.

The stress of spending during the holidays can be compounded when you are going through a divorce because the financial resources you previously had may be drastically reduced, or you may be restricted from spending it.  The following financial tips for getting through the holiday season can actually be applicable throughout the year, and can help you adjust to your new financial reality more smoothly.

Learn to Budget

Creating a reasonable holiday budget for gifts and trips can be a great way to manage spending.  It is important to make sure that your budget is realistic and does not rely on funds not yet in hand.  For example, in making your holiday budget, it is best not to rely on tax refunds in the coming year to cover the purchases. Income levels may change after going through a divorce, and may take years to go back up.  A budget throughout the year will also help manage your finances to absorb any unexpected divorce expenses, and prepare for the possibility of a reduced income and new monthly bills once the divorce is finalized.

Quality Time over Quantity

Plan to spend more quality time with your children during the holiday season, if there is no court order prohibiting this, instead of buying them numerous gifts.  Children of parents who are going through a divorce may need to be reassured that even though things may change, they are still loved and protected.  Some parents may try to show this through going overboard with gifts, or giving their children big ticket items. However, this is not wise, both for the child and the parents’ bank accounts.

Practice Restraint

Retail therapy can be tempting, especially with the numerous sales on offer this time of year. However, once the bills come in, it can be a sobering experience. While getting yourself a few gifts may be manageable, you should avoid making any large purchases such as a vehicle. Even if you need to make the purchase and want to take advantage of deals, make sure you take the time to think about the purchase, and take a cooling off period to ensure you are making the right decision for the right reasons.

Be Careful With Joint Assets

Funding holiday shopping with spousal joint assets before a court has made a final decision on how they are to be divided can cause legal issues for you down the road. While spending for necessities or reasonable gifts may be permissible, excessive spending may be considered wasting of joint assets and may be considered during the division of assets. Even if you anticipate a certain sum coming to you after the divorce, it is more prudent to wait until everything is finalized before spending it.

Contact An Experienced Attorney

Making sure you have the right legal representation during a divorce is as important as making sure you avoid financial pitfalls as you go through the process. For a consultation with an  experienced family law attorney in San Diego County, contact JWB Family Law.

Getting divorced in San Diego County? Call us today. 619.234.6123

Schedule a free 30 minute consultation with JWB Family Law

Can You Record Your Spouse to Show Harassment?

There are many reasons for spouses to make the difficult choice to get divorced. Some of these may involve very stressful experiences, and those experiences can lead to emotional reactions that are difficult to work through. Other times, there may be some very valid reasons for pursuing divorce and the divorce process can lead to your spouse potentially engaging in disturbing behavior that you want to capture for the court.

In either case, it may be tempting to secretly record your spouse to demonstrate harassment, infidelity, lack of fitness for custody, or any number of other reasons. Events that unfolded in the recent election demonstrated how damaging secret video recording can be. While little has been discussed about the potential legal consequences for whoever secretly recorded candidates potentially engaging in sexual harassment, secretly recording your spouse in California can expose you to your own serious legal consequences.

California Privacy Law

California is what is known as a two-party state when it comes to recording conversations. This means that both parties being recorded must consent to the recording in order for the recording to be lawful. California Penal Code §632 covers parties in the state engaging in the recording of confidential communications and makes recording such conversations a crime if both parties do not consent to the recording.

Confidential communications are considered to be forms of communication carried out in circumstances that a person reasonably believes to be confidential between the two parties. Generally, this includes phone conversations. It does not necessarily apply to communication that takes place in a public place like a hotel lobby or a park. That means making the decisions to record your spouse could expose you to criminal and civil penalties in some situations that include:

  •      A fine of up to $2,500;
  •      Up to a year in jail; and/or
  •      Civil penalties of $3,000 or three times the amount of actual damages caused by the secret recording.

As you can see, engaging in secret recording can be extremely risky for you.

Recordings as Evidence

Generally, California prohibits parties from using illegally obtained recordings as evidence in court. However, there are some exceptions to this rule. In some cases, secret recordings can be used to impeach a witness or to encourage recollection of a conversation or event. However, there is generally little need for a person to try and do this during divorce proceedings. California is a “no fault” divorce state, which means that it is not necessary to prove fault on your spouse’s part to be granted a divorce. Thus, collecting evidence to prove your spouse has engaged in some type of questionable activity will often have little impact on the outcome of your divorce.

Additionally, while the information you share with your California divorce attorney is confidential, bringing an illegal recording of your spouse into the mix can cause complications during the discovery period because while illegal recordings cannot be used as actual evidence, they generally must be turned over to the opposing party when litigation is in the discovery phase. While you may think you have covertly recorded your spouse, having to turn such recordings over will notify your spouse and their attorney that you engaged in potentially illegal recording activity.

Legal Assistance with California Divorce

If you have made the difficult decisions to pursue divorce, it is important to find an experienced California divorce attorney that understands the divorce process. Working with an attorney through all steps of the divorce process can help you feel comfortable that your rights are being protected, and can potentially help stop you from taking actions that might be illegal. Jane Wesley Brooks has worked with numerous clients on their San Diego County divorce, and can use that experience to work with you, too. Contact JWB Family Law to schedule a consultation where you can find out more about what the divorce process might involve for you.

Getting divorced in San Diego County? Call us today. 619.234.6123

Schedule a free 30 minute consultation with JWB Family Law

Third Party Visitation Rights in California

Divorce is often a complex and stressful process. The process can be even more difficult when children are involved, and in such cases may bring even more family members into the process itself. For especially close families, family members may be concerned about how a divorce will impact their ability to spend time with a divorcing couple’s children. When these situations arise in California, it is sometimes possible for the court to grant visitation to someone other than the parents of a child if that person has a significant interest in the welfare of the child in question. However, while such a possibility exists, it is not always very easy to prove that you or another family member has an interest in the child’s welfare that trumps a custodial parent’s objection to granting visitation to that family member. There are different situations in which third party visitation might become a legal issue and, depending on the role of the third party in a child’s life, the court will approach such issues differently.

When Third-Party Visitation Might Be an Issue

While the question of third party visitation most often arises in divorce proceedings, especially considering the heightened emotions surrounding divorce, it is not necessarily limited only to divorce. There are three basic examples of when third party visitation might be an issue, which are:

  1.     When a child’s parents divorce;
  2.     When a child’s parents have never been married and are not in a relationship with one another; and
  3.     When one of a child’s parents dies.

Regardless of the situation at hand, the most important factor used in determining whether or not a third party should be granted visitation rights is whether or not such visitation is in the best interests of the child in question.

While the best interests of the child in question is certainly the primary factor in a court’s decision, it is not necessarily the only factor that a court must consider. In fact, the court must consider the weight of a parent’s right to deny visitation as guaranteed by principles found in the U.S. Constitution against whether or not the visitation is in the best interests of the child. In cases where the parent’s right to deny visitation outweighs the potential benefits of such visitation, that visitation cannot be ordered by the court.

Grandparents as Third Parties

When grandparents want to see their grandchildren and an otherwise fit parent that has custody objects to the grandparents having access to the children, a court may sometimes order visitation anyhow even though doing so goes against the parent’s wishes. While California case law has given additional weight to the parent’s objection, ordering visitation for grandparents that have maintained a significant relationship with the child in question does not appear to violate a parent’s presumptive right to choose what is best for their own child. In other words, the courts will take a parent’s objection into consideration, but a subsequent decision granting visitation to grandparents does not infringe on a parent’s right to choose what is best for their child in an excessive manner. In some cases, a grandparent may join in a divorce proceeding to request such visitation rights or they may request such rights by initiating their own separate action.

Other Family Members and Other Third Parties

While it is possible for other family members or other nonrelative third parties to be granted visitation rights, it is more difficult for such people to obtain visitation. In proceedings to determine third party access to a child, a court must basically begin the proceedings with the presumption that a parent’s objection to this visitation is in the child’s best interests. In other words, the person petitioning for third party visitation must overcome the parent’s objection to such visitation by proving that lack of visitation is in fact detrimental to the child’s best interests. It can often be difficult to do that.

Questions About Visitation

In California, child custody and visitation are complex legal matters. If you have questions or concerns about child custody and/or visitation because you are considering divorce, or if you are looking for information on potentially modifying existing arrangements, a family law attorney with experience handling such matters can help you understand more about your options. Contact JWB Family Law to schedule a consultation about your individual circumstances and questions.

Getting divorced in San Diego County? Call us today. 619.234.6123

Schedule a free 30 minute consultation with JWB Family Law

 

Getting divorced in San Diego County? Call Jane Wesley Brooks Family Law today. 619.234.6123

 

JWB Family Law Schedule A Free Consultation

JWB Family Law

Jane Wesley Brooks, CFLS
1901 First Avenue, Suite 148

San Diego, CA 92101

Phone: 619. 234. 6123

Fax: 619. 564. 8046

Connect with us.