Child custody is one of the most emotional and stressful issues in our current legal system. Not only is it difficult for both of the parents, the children are the ones who are the most affected. As a loving parent, you want the best situation for your child or children. There are many benefits to negotiating a parenting plan. The reason being that you know your children and what is best for their schedules. Because of this, most family court judges prefer parents to attempt to reach an agreement outside of court. Our attorneys are uniquely qualified to walk parents through the mediation process, often times allowing the parents to dictate a schedule that is tailor made to their specific circumstances (and avoiding unnecessary and costly litigation in the process).

However, not all couples can come to an agreement over custody related issues and it is up to the court to decide custody rights. Don’t risk losing your children to court rulings. 
Every child custody case is unique and an attorney is invaluable in sorting out these issues. Our experienced child custody lawyers can help with any of the following child custody related legal matters:

  • Legal Custody vs. Physical Custody

    Legal custody refers to which parent makes decisions regarding the child’s health and welfare such as where the child goes to school and what doctor the child visits.

    Physical custody refers to where and with whom the child resides.

    Many variations of these two are available. Parents may share joint legal custody but one will maintain primary physical custody. Another situation may involve one parent having sole legal custody with the parents sharing physical custody. Each situation is different and a consultation with an experienced family law attorney will help you understand your options and what the court will consider when making this determination.

  • Visitation Rights

    Child custody and visitation issues are some of the most emotionally charged and challenging between parents. The courts will determine custody and visitation based upon the best interest of the child and typically consider the following points:

    what is the level of conflict between the parents?
    which parent is most likely to support frequent and continuing contact with the other parent?
    what is the nature of the relationship between the child(ren) and each parent?
    is there cooperation between the parents?
    depending on their age, the court may give the child(res) an opportunity to express their wishes.

    Consulting with an experienced family law attorney as early in the process as possible will ensure you are fully aware of what the court will consider. Our child custody attorneys have litigated and negotiated hundreds of custody and visitation cases and are uniquely positioned to help you present the best case possible. Do not risk losing your children by handling this yourself. Call us now to see how we can help.

  • Child Custody Modifications

    Very few custody orders are set in stone. The best interests of the child is always the foremost concern of the court and in a situation where a modification would benefit the child, the courts will listen.

    However, once an initial custody determination has been made, the court may apply either a “best interest” standard or a “changed circumstances” standard depending on the unique facts of the case. It is important that you understand the nuances involved with each standard and the experienced child custody attorneys are here to help.

  • Move Away Requests

    Move-away requests can be especially troublesome in California. There are situations that occur where a custodial parent will need to move away, whether it be a new job, marriage, or other situation that requires a move. These situations can be emotionally charged for both parents involved as well as the children. The attorneys at the Law Offices of Tracy R. Horn are experienced with handling these requests and are here to guide you through the process.

    The courts will not deny a custodial parent the right to move away. However, the issue then becomes whether the children leave with the moving party or stay with the non-moving party. Our child custody attorneys understand the emotions involved, especially when a move in imminent. This is not something you want to wait until the last minute to address. Call us today to see how we can help.