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How We Help
A father's right to spend time with his children is such a basic desire. Fathers who need assistance with child custody, child visitation, and/or child support issues contact us all the time. Mothers also experiencing these types of issues contact us every day.
About the Children (ATC) does not take sides. We help both mothers and fathers. ATC cares about what is in the best interest of the children - just like your Family Court Judge. Hence, we are not a father's advocate group, or a mother's advocate group - we are a Parental Advocate Group, that truly is about the children.
We focus on advocating for parents by supporting them to help themselves, in entering into family court, without having to come up with a retainer fee, or paying an attorney by the hour.
You will have access to the most updated information on family court, custody related matters, and techniques to successfully approach single parenting and co-parenting as you continue to raise your child or children.
Many of our staff members have been through similar situations as you with their own children and families. They are excited to support you through this process and can provide excellent insight from a parenting perspective going through the family court system.
Finding access to any family court begins with the filing of court documents. The documents filed, explains to the court what you want and why the court should give it to you. Preparing them the way the court requires is very complex.
The most effective way to start, change, or enforce any child custody,
visitation, or child support issue, is to get a court order signed by a judge.
In family court, having accurate and properly prepared court documents can greatly assist in a fast resolution to your situation. Most family court cases today involve mandatory mediation which generally excludes the involvement of an attorney, and coordinates parents to talk through their issues together with a mediator or other court official. With properly prepared court documents, resolution usually is accomplished without ever having to stand in front of a judge.
ATC is not a law firm, we work in conjunction with Attorneys, and Legal Document Assistants who type court documents for parents like you, based on information you select and provide us. The information on this website should not be regarded as or serve as a substitute for legal advice
Some of the issues parents have problems with:
Child Custody ~ Child Visitation ~ Child Support ~ Out of State Issues ~ Stop Move
Temporary Orders ~ Restraining Orders ~ Divorce ~ Drivers License Suspension ~
Father's Rights ~ Mother's Rights ~ Grandparent's Rights ~ Paternity Issues ~
Self Help Solutions ~ Contempt of Court ~ Emergency Protective Custody Orders
Collecting Child Support ~ Starting Child Support ~ Stopping Child Support
Often, many parents mistakenly make the assumption that child support is 100% tied to child custody or visitation. While this may be true in some cases, it may not be true to all.
In most disagreements, having a well-defined court order in place often clears up any misunderstandings and keeps both parents in check throughout the longevity of parenting their children into adulthood. If you are required to go to court, we will support and prepare you to help yourself to obtain an order for the first time or get your existing order changed.
Generally, there will not be a custody order without a support order and vice versa unless the parties previously agreed to visitation issues. Furthermore, generally, parents will agree to both. Problems typically arise later when one parent is being unfair, or if parents simply disagree over minor issues and a lawyer gets involved with the recognition that there are no orders in place, and encourages them to seek such orders to take the guess-work out.
Most court orders outlining custody, visitation, and support often take the guess work out of arrangements involving children of broken or separated families so that everyone understands what is expected of each parent. Such orders are generally subject to change if the parents circumstances change (i.e., job loss, illness, disability, and others).
What is Child Support?
Child Support is the obligation paid to the custodial parent of child by the non custodial parent for rearing the child. It is in the best interest of a child for both parents to be obligated to pay for the support of their child. An order for child support transfers the income/wealth from one parent to the other so that the combined incomes/wealth of both parents is available to use for the support of the child.
A Child Support order includes when and how much a parent has to pay for child support. A Child Support Order is generally part of a divorce decree or paternity judgment. Most states now follow a guideline or formula devised for estimating child support amount. This ensures uniformity in child support payment from court to court.
If you do not have a child visitation or child custody order in place, and are paying high child support, obtaining such an order may lower the amount of child support you pay.
Reference:FAMILY CODE (SECTION 3585-3587)
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Child Custody is an issue that affects everybody involved - mom, dad, children, as well as other family members. Nothing is as precious to a parent as their own child. Regardless of any bad situations, or choices you may have made in the past, you still have rights.
Reference: CA FAMILY CODE (SECTION 3000-3007)
More on Child Custody
Child Custody and Guardianship are the legal terms used to describe the legal and practical relationship between a parent and child, including e.g. the right of the parent to make decisions for the child and the duty to care for the child. As previously stated - child custody is determined by assuring that what is being proposed/decided is in the best interest of the child.
Reference: CA FAMILY CODE (SECTION 3020-3032)
"Legal Custody" gives a parent the right to make long-term decisions about the raising of a child, and key aspects of the child's welfare -- including the child's education, medical care, dental care, and religious instruction. In many child custody cases, legal custody is awarded to both parents (called "joint legal custody"), unless it is shown that one parent is somehow unfit, or is incapable of making decisions about the child's upbringing. Legal custody is different from "physical custody," which involves issues such as where the child will live.
In Child Custody situations, "joint custody" usually refers to one of two possible scenarios: joint legal and physical custody, or joint legal custody.
In true "Joint Custody" arrangements, parents share equal "legal custody" and "physical custody" rights. This means that parents participate equally in making decisions about the child's upbringing and welfare, and split time evenly in having day-to-day care and responsibility for the child -- including the parent's right to have the child live with them. True joint custody arrangements are rare, because of their potential to cause both personal difficulties (stress, disruption of child's routine) and practical problems (scheduling, costs of maintaining two permanent living spaces for the child).
Much more common than true joint custody arrangements (where both physical and legal custody are shared) is "joint legal custody," in which both parents share the right to make long-term decisions about the raising of a child and key aspects of the child's welfare, with physical custody awarded to one parent.
Reference: CA FAMILY CODE (SECTION 3080-3089)
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Regardless of any bad situations, or choices you may have made in the past, most parents have rights to visit their children. Child Visitation is the most important legal step to staying in touch with your child's life. In some cases, you can remain a non custodial parent, but visit your child on a regular visitation schedule. The best way to make your scheduled time with your child or children enforceable is to have an agreement approved by the court.
Visitation schedules are determined, like all other domestic issues involving children, in accordance with the best interests of the child. In most situations, it is important that visits with a child be frequent and continuing. Contact us today - Getting a court order will help protect you, so that the other party is not in control of the situation. Contact us today to review what others have done in similar situations as you are having. Be sure to review the Child Custody section on this site, and then call us to discuss how we can assist you.
Reference: CA FAMILY CODE (SECTION 3100-3105)
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Nobody gets married to get divorced - Divorces aren't planned, and are at best, a mentally difficult process. If you have been served divorce papers, you need to respond within the indicated timeframe, or you can lose by default. Since our goal is in uniting families, if there's a chance of reconciliation, we would like to work towards that resolution. However, if there is no chance of reconciliation, we still want to assist you.
About the Children's goal is to help parents address their family issues, without having to come up with a retainer fee, or have to worry about paying an attorney by the hour. Contact us today so we can see how we can best assist you in your family situation.
Reference: CA FAMILY CODE (SECTION 2300, 2310-2313, 2400-2406)
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Call us today - there is no charge to speak with a representative to see how we can help you help yourself in connection with your child related issues at a cost you can afford. The first step is for you to fill out the form below, or call us directly to confirm that you qualify for our program.
Once again, ATC is not a law firm and cannot provide legal advice. ATC helps you by drafting your court documents based on information you select and information you provide us.
Let’s discuss how we can help you assist yourself in addressing your current family issues.
"We're AboutTheChildren- It's About Time"