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As a father, what are my chances of getting custody?

Child custody proceedings can be very scary to go through. As a devoted parent, you want to spend quality time with your child even after you get a divorce or separate from your partner.

But as a male, you may be concerned about perceived biases against fathers who are seeking custody of their children. And you may have many questions about your chances of getting custody of your child:

  • As a father, do I stand less of a chance of getting full custody?
  • Are the courts biased against fathers seeking custody?

Before you let fear and misconceptions take over, it is important to understand what the law says about child custody.

First things first, there are two types of custody that must be determined in any child custody case:

  • Physical custody: Where the child will spend his or her time.
  • Legal custody: Who will make important decisions about the child's upbringing (health care, education, religion, etc.)

Both physical and legal custody can be awarded as joint or sole.

Judges consider what is in the best interests of the child or children involved when determining both physical and legal custody. The courts do not automatically award custody to a mother or a father. Rather, they carefully consider a variety of factors when determining what is in the best interests of the child:

  • The age of the child
  • The health and wellbeing of the child
  • The relationship between the child and each parent
  • The ability of each parent to provide care for the child
  • The ability of each parent to foster a positive relationship between the other parent and the child
  • How connected the child is to his or her school, friends, community, etc.
  • Any instances of substance abuse, domestic violence, etc.

California courts look at each child custody case in a vacuum. There is no presumption that a mother is better equipped to take care of a child than the father.

As you can see, the courts consider many factors when determining child custody - and not one of them has to do with the gender of the parent. In all legal matters that affect children, the courts consider what is best for the child. This often - but not always - involves approving a plan that allows for close and continuous contact with both parents.

Are you a father who is seeking child custody in California? We would be happy to discuss your legal options during an initial consultation. Please complete our online contact form to get started.

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Minutes From Downtown Sacramento

Our office is conveniently located off Highway 50, just three miles from the Sacramento County Family Courthouse and minutes from Downtown Sacramento. For your convenience, we accept all major credit cards.

Victoria S. Linder Law Office
5303 Folsom Boulevard
Sacramento, CA 95819

Phone: 916-905-4805
Fax: 916-498-0127
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