Understanding fathers’ rights in California: An overview


As a father, you have the right to feel as much concerned about your minor child as your spouse. It’s a common myth that the family courts in California typically rule against dads. There is no such bias. If you want to understand fathers rights & custody better with regard to your circumstances, you should consult a local family lawyer. There are attorneys who have extensive experience fighting for the rights and interests of fathers. For your help, here is an overview of the basic rights that all dads have in the state. 

The basics

If you are going through a divorce and don’t agree with your spouse on child custody and child support matters, you can consider taking up a legal battle. Courts in the state usually favor joint custody of minor kids, assuming that spending time with both parents is in the best interests of the child. As the father, you have rights like – 

  1. Staying involved in your children’s lives
  2. Spending time with the kids
  3. Say in all key decisions, such as the religion that your child practices and their medical needs
  4. Participating in all major parenting decisions
  5. Checking school, medical, and other records
  6. Disciplining the children

As a parent, no matter the gender, you have the right to equal parenting rights and parenting decisions. Joint legal custody is usually the best choice for most custody battles unless there are other conflicts or issues like child abuse, substance abuse, and domestic violence. Just because you can seek sole legal custody doesn’t mean it is the right thing for you or the child. Co-parenting with your spouse may work better, especially if both people have busy lives. 

Get an attorney

Custody battles between separating parents often get ugly for many reasons. At the end of the day, you would want to resolve things amicably for the sake of your kids. If your spouse is unreasonable or you are unaware of your rights as a father, hiring an attorney is necessary. While hiring a lawyer doesn’t mean you would get the things you want from the divorce, you can still hope to minimize friction. When two lawyers are talking, they can be flexible and yet protect the interests of their respective clients. 

If you are hiring a divorce or custody lawyer, just make sure that they are experienced and have fought legal battles for dads in particular. You can always consider their landmark custody cases to compare options. 

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