Things to know about sole child custody

When California parents divorce, they must come to an agreement regarding important child-related issues. In many cases, a parent requests sole child custody in court. In doing so, the parent must be prepared to provide legitimate reasons to the court that convinces the judge to rule in his or her favor.  

Not getting along with an ex isn’t necessarily cause for sole custody 

Some parents who divorce have contentious relationships to the point that they can barely be in the same room without arguing. Not getting along with an ex might not be considered cause to grant sole child custody. In fact, the court typically believes that most children fare best when they spend ample time with both parents after a divorce.  

Substance abuse, geographical distance and other legitimate causes 

If a parent lives hundreds or thousands of miles away from his or her ex, the court might decide that the children would be better off if they do not have to travel back and forth between households. Besides living far apart, there are other issues that might constitute grounds for requesting sole custody, such as having an ex who is abusive or who is struggling with substances abuse. The court keeps children’s safety in mind at all times and would not want them living with a parent that places them at risk. 

Be prepared to substantiate a claim 

It is not enough to claim that an ex is a detriment to children because he or she uses illegal drugs or neglects their care. A parent making such a claim must show evidence to prove it. An experienced California family law attorney can help a concerned parent build a strong case when he or she plans on requesting sole child custody in a divorce.