If you are looking for sole physical custody, then the first question to ask is: are the children currently in danger when in the care of the other party?
Often times, a parent answers “yes,” but when you ask that parent what the danger is, he/she has a hard time articulating it. Other times, the answer is related to having a poor co-parenting relationship.
So, what would the Court consider as "danger?"
1) Is the child exposed to abuse?
If a child is exposed to domestic violence between their parents or parents’ significant other, then the child is in danger. If a parent is an alcoholic and or drug addict (including pharmaceutical drugs), then your child is likely in danger.
2) Has child welfare services been involved?
If the answer is no, then it may be a good idea to involve them. If the danger isn’t worthy of a call to child welfare services, then most likely the child is NOT in danger. If child welfare services senses that there is danger, then it will communicate with law enforcement and create a safety plan for the parents to sign.
3) Did your child participate in any medical evaluations?
If your child is in danger, then it is important that the child is evaluated. If it doesn’t rise to the level of needing a doctor to assess any injuries (including mental and or emotional abuse), then your child is likely NOT in danger.
4) Is there a history of abduction?
If a parent repeatedly threatens to cross the Mexican border with the children and never return, for example, but actually never does it, then it is likely that your child is NOT in danger. The Court will look at the context of the repeated threat. However, if a parent actually does cross the border and doesn't return with the child, then it is time to ask for sole physical custody immediately. The only visitation plan that parent should have is with a professional supervisor at that point.
If you need someone who can assist you in obtaining sole physical custody, then don’t hesitate to contact our office today, 858.761.8661.
Tags: abuse domestic violence child custody children san diego family law attorney la jolla family law attorney abduction danger professional supervisor supervised visitation sole physical custody physical custody