If you are thinking about ending your marriage, custody of the children you share with your soon-to-be ex-spouse may be your biggest concern. You may even fear you will rarely or never see your kids. Nevertheless, as a father, you should not worry your children’s mother will have any advantage in your custody case.
Both California law and the family courts in San Joaquin Country are gender neutral. As a result, there is no chance the judge in your case will consider your gender or your spouse’s when making a custody determination. Instead, the judge is likely to focus on what custody arrangement is best for your kids.
The best interests of your children
To determine what is in your children’s best interests, the judge must consider some statutory factors and any other relevant information. The availability of the parent is usually the most important factor in custody determinations in California. Consequently, if you are ready, willing and able to care for your kids, a judge is likely to award you some sort of custody.
A negotiated custody agreement
If you want to remove some uncertainty from your custody matter, you may want to negotiate a custody agreement with your spouse. After all, if you come up with an effective agreement, the judge in your case is apt to honor it.
A common custody arrangement
Parents often choose a 2/2/5/5 custody arrangement. With this arrangement, your kids are with one parent from Monday night through Wednesday morning and with the other parent Wednesday and Thursday nights. You and your ex-spouse then alternate weekends and split holidays.
Whether the 2/2/5/5 custody arrangement works for your post-divorce family ultimately depends on many factors. Still, this common arrangement may give you and your spouse a place to start your negotiations.