Mothers have certain rights in divorce and child custody cases, including rights to fair consideration of spousal support, property division, and child custody. Although historically it was assumed that the mother would gain custody and the father would pay child support, state law no longer supports these views.
Divorce and child custody disputes can affect the most significant aspects of your life, such as your relationships with your former spouse and children, your right to property, and your future financial obligations. During this time, it is crucial to retain a Thousand Oaks mothers’ rights lawyer who could guide you through complex legal processes. An experienced family law attorney could provide dedicated counsel to you through your case to uphold your rights and help you reach an equitable agreement.
State law no longer presumes that mothers are better caregivers than fathers, and a mother does not have any specific advantage over a father in a custody case. Instead, the law encourages custody arrangements that provide children with ongoing and substantial contact with both parents. This does not mean that mothers do not have rights, but rather that both parents start on equal footing in a custody dispute.
Courts now determine custody based solely on a child’s best interests. To make this determination, a judge may consider certain factors, including:
Further, a mother may have the right to obtain sole custody of her children. There are various reasons why it may be in children’s best interests to be in their mother’s exclusive care, including the lack of a consistent relationship with the father or a father who puts the children at risk. A mother must prove to a judge that she can put her children’s needs first. Working with a knowledgeable lawyer in Thousand Oaks could help a mother build her case.
A mother has the right to protect herself and her children from domestic abuse, also known as intimate partner violence. If a mother or her children are being abused or threatened by the other parent, she could seek a restraining order and ask a judge to restrict or suspend contact with the abusive parent. A judge could also order that any visits between the ‘restrained’ parent and the children be supervised by a neutral third party to ensure the children’s safety.
State law takes the prevention of domestic violence and the safety of mothers and children very seriously. Under California Penal Code §273.6, anyone who violates a restraining order can be charged with a crime punishable by a fine or incarceration for up to a year. A skilled mothers’ rights attorney in Thousand Oaks could assist a woman in obtaining protection for herself and her family.
Family dynamics often change when parents separate, and a mother who has stayed at home to raise children and manage the family home and finances may need ongoing financial support. A court should consider a mother’s non-economic contribution to the parties’ marriage when determining a spousal support award. A mother may also require education or vocational training after the separation so that she can reenter the workforce and seek financial independence.
Mothers with primary care of their children also have the right to work with a local attorney to fight for child support. A lawyer with experience in child custody and divorce cases could assist a mother in receiving her fair share of income and assets in the divorce process.
Separating from a spouse or partner can be overwhelming, especially if you have children together. A Thousand Oak’s mothers’ rights lawyer could guide you through the legal processes of divorce, custody, and domestic violence prevention. Our firm’s compassionate legal counsel could provide strong support for you if you need assistance in preserving your rights to financial stability and your children’s safety and well-being. Call today to schedule a consultation.