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  1. #1
    JustinLukas is offline Junior Member
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    Is it always 50/50 physical custody in California?

    What is the name of your state? CA

    I currently live with my son and his father and I want to separate and file for custody. Our son is in daycare during the week but on weekends and every weekday morning and after daycare I have provided the primary care of our 15 month old son.

    His father will not accept anything short of 50/50 physical custody. He wants 3 overnights one week, 4 overnights the next week, etc. I feel that this is way too much back and forth for a young child especially since I have been his primary since birth. Is this the standard in California (San Francisco)?

    My proposal was two week day nights (back to my by bedtime) and start off with one overnight on the weekend and in a month or so move up to two overnights and eventually three overnights. Is this just a dream?

    By the way, ever since I have mentioned that I wanted to separate, my son's father has become "Mr. Involvement" and is trying to monopolize all of his time. If I am holding our son, his father will come over and take him out of my arms. The living conditions have become very strained and tense.

    Thanks in advance for the advice.
  2. #2
    rmet4nzkx is offline Senior Member
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    NO it is not always 50/50 custody and don't confuse custody with visitation.
    Have you established paternity yet, if so, how?
    Are there any domestic violence issues?
    Are there any other issues affecting the fitness of either parent or problems with childcare while working?
    Are you planning on moving or expecting the father to move out?
    While you may reach agreements, it is best to go to court so agreements become orders and can be enforced and you child's welfare protected.
    The father may be looking at 50/50 custody as a way of avoiding child support and or childcare expenses and forcing you to do this out of court, that is a big mistake. Please consult an attorney before taking any action, also check with the family law facilitator for information about the various steps required, begining with establishing paternity if it has not already been established. You can find them through your local superior court website along with access to legal forms. Often there are self help clinics and referals available.
  3. #3
    casa is offline Senior Member
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    What I have been told by attorneys and court is that CA has a "Best Interest of the children" standard- meaning they try to determine what situation would be in the best interest of the children. If you go to court in CA they will likely have you attend Mediation together to have an evaluator attempt to help you guys work out an agreement about custody and visitation together.
    Maybe you can look on your family court website and read up about mediation and what the different types of custody mean.

    Being a parent who's been there and done that- I can tell you one thing they consider is if the child is already in daycare, they will want to try to keep the child's schedule as close to the way it was, as is possible. For instance, who is moving out you or father? Is he moving far enough away that he won't be able to take the child to the same daycare if he has the child overnight? Let them know concerns you have over the child going to and fro so much at a young age, etc.

    Expect the father to become parent of the year~ That happens a lot, in my opinion. Start documenting times he is/has been unavailable to care for son or to pick up son from daycare or any times it was solely on you to care for or transport your child. Who has taken the child to most events, holidays or Dr.'s visits?

    I am not an attorney, just a parent who's gone through this in CA, so I hope that some of this helps.
  4. #4
    LdiJ is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by JustinLukas
    What is the name of your state? CA

    I currently live with my son and his father and I want to separate and file for custody. Our son is in daycare during the week but on weekends and every weekday morning and after daycare I have provided the primary care of our 15 month old son.

    His father will not accept anything short of 50/50 physical custody. He wants 3 overnights one week, 4 overnights the next week, etc. I feel that this is way too much back and forth for a young child especially since I have been his primary since birth. Is this the standard in California (San Francisco)?

    My proposal was two week day nights (back to my by bedtime) and start off with one overnight on the weekend and in a month or so move up to two overnights and eventually three overnights. Is this just a dream?

    By the way, ever since I have mentioned that I wanted to separate, my son's father has become "Mr. Involvement" and is trying to monopolize all of his time. If I am holding our son, his father will come over and take him out of my arms. The living conditions have become very strained and tense.

    Thanks in advance for the advice.
    No, 50/50 physical custody IS NOT standard for a child that young. Its not even standard for older children. Your best bet would be to get a consult with an attorney. Also, don't propose a plan that gives him the bulk of the weekends. You are entitled to weekend time with your child too.
  5. #5
    tigger22472 is offline Senior Member
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    My sd has done 50/50 custody ( on a two week/ two week schedule) since she was 3 and has done fine.
  6. #6
    snostar is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by JustinLukas
    His father will not accept anything short of 50/50 physical custody. He wants 3 overnights one week, 4 overnights the next week, etc. I feel that this is way too much back and forth for a young child especially since I have been his primary since birth.
    The back and forth depends on how far apart you will be. Really, there is NOTHING wrong with a father wanting 50% of the time with a child he is 50% responsible for creating.....GEESH! I gave my son's father 50/50 when our son was 9 months old, 4 days on 4 off (then switched to 1wk on/ 1 wk off) - and he had played little to no part in our child's life prior. You know what - it was the best decision I ever made for our child. If there are other factors (mentioned by rmet) please tell us.
  7. #7
    SMURFEELAW is offline Member
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    My future SD has been doing it since just over 2 years old and its week on week off where parents live 200 miles apart. She has done really well with it.
    Good luck.
  8. #8
    haiku is offline Senior Member
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    there is nothing wrong with a father requesting 50/50 physical.

    It all depends on alot of factors,

    such as whether or not you two will be living close by.

    how willing you are to co-operate, etc....

    the goal should be for both parents to get as much time as possible to be a parent to thier child.

    the parent who is willing to do what is best for the child is the one who will be looked apon most favorably in court.
    "It is easier to build strong children than repair broken men." Frederick Douglas

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