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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