Huntington Beach Child Custody Attorney: Protecting Children’s Best Interests
At the Law Offices of William M. Strachan in Huntington Beach, California, we understand that child custody disputes can be difficult for any family. For over 34 years, our firm has successfully handled child custody agreements stemming from divorce as well as when children move away.
We Handle Custody Matters Related To:
- Physical Custody
- Modification and Enforcement
If you are dealing with any of the above issues, you can count on the law firm of William Strachan to handle your case. It’s important to speak with a child custody lawyer early on in the process to minimize any negative effects on your children.
Protecting My Client’s Parental Rights
At the Law Offices of William M. Strachan, we work to protect our client’s parental rights. This involves developing a parenting plan between both spouses. A parenting plan or court order clearly spells out who has physical and legal custody of the children. It also details visitation rights so that the children get to see both parents. Our team will advise you of all your options and the best way to protect your parental rights.
How to File for Visitation
If you already have an open case in court, you can file for visitation as part of that case. The process typically is as follows:
- Fill out court forms
- Have forms reviewed
- File forms with the court clerk
- Get your court or mediation date
- Serve papers to the other parent
- File proof of service
- Go to mediation or court hearing
If you do not have an open case in court, one will need to be started to file for visitation. If you are married to the other parent or are registered domestic partners, you can ask for custody or visitation orders in these situations:
- Legal Separation or Annulment
- Domestic Violence Restraining Order
- Petition for Custody and Support of Minor Children
- Local Child Support Agency Case
Our law offices can help in any of the situations, whether you have an open case or need to start one. We can assure that paperwork is filled out and filed correctly to avoid any unnecessary delays.
Child’s Best Interest
Child custody and visitation agreements are made with the child’s best interest in mind. When we represent parents, we work with you to develop a parenting plan that meets your goals and is in your child’s best interest.
The child’s best interest is designed to protect the mental, emotional, and physical well-being of a child. The goal is to make sure that parents can provide for their children and raise them properly.
What age can a child refuse visitation in California?
Keeping the best interest of the child in mind, there does come a point when a child can express their desire to refuse visitation. When the child reaches 14 years of age, they can voice their custodial preference. The court will consider the child’s preference and weigh it to determine if it is in their best interest or if it would be detrimental.
Can You Modify a Child Custody/Visitation Order?
In California, you can ask for a modification of a child custody and visitation order if you can prove to the court that there has been a significant change of circumstances since the original order was placed. You will also have to prove that whatever change you’re asking for is in the best interests of the child.
The Law Offices of William M. Strachan represent and defends people in modification and enforcement hearings. Complications can arise when the meaning of an order can be subjected to various interpretations. When this happens, you want to have an experienced team on your side that is familiar with many facets of family law. Our team can use their expertise to help you achieve the best outcome.
If there are relocation issues, the court will consider the following:
- Circumstances surrounding the move
- Impact on the children’s best interests
- Relationships with both parents
- Impact on the relationship of the children and the parent they are leaving behind
If you have sole physical custody, you can move without needing a new trial as long as you have a good-faith reason for the move. The non-custodial parent must also not be able to show that the move would be detrimental to his or her relationship with the children.
If you have joint physical custody, the law provides that you are entitled to a new trial to determine what custodial arrangement is in the best interest of the children.
Do You Need a Child Custody Attorney?
The Law Offices of William M. Strachan is here for you if you need a child custody attorney. Contact us to schedule a free consultation to learn how we can help. We proudly serve all of Orange County and surrounding cities.