Practice Areas

Los Angeles Child Custody Attorneys

When parents separate or get a divorce, their children are affected in many different ways. There are some factors to consider when determining child custody in California.  A Los Angeles child custody lawyer can help determine if specific factors will have a role in determining child custody in the state of California. They are:

  • The best interests of the child
  • Which parent is more likely to encourage frequent visits with the other parent
  • Child’s wishes, which are only considered if the child is of a certain age and maturity level (generally over age 12)
  • History of domestic violence
  • History of drug use

Children have the right to enjoy time with both parents, provided they are safe and cared for in the appropriate manner. Many aspects of your child’s care are up for negotiation during the divorce process, and when it comes to custody the issues fall into two broad categories of legal custody and physical custody.

Legal custody can be:

  • Joint, where both parents share the right and responsibility to make the important decisions about the health, education, and welfare of the children.
  • Sole, where only one parent has the right and responsibility to make the important decisions about the health, education, and welfare of the children.

Parents with legal custody make all the decisions or choices about their children’s:

  • School or child care
  • Religious activities or institutions
  • Psychiatric, psychological, or other mental health counseling or therapy needs
  • Doctor, dentist, orthodontist, or other health professional
  • Sports, summer camp, vacation, or extracurricular activities
  • Travel
  • Residence (where the children will live)

Those parents who share legal custody of their child or children both have the right to make decisions about these decisions above. However, they do not have to agree on every decision. Either parent can make a decision alone, but to avoid having problems and ending up back in court, both parents should communicate with each other in making decisions together.

Physical custody is:

  • Joint, which means the children live with both parents.
  • Sole or primary, which means the children live with one parent most of the time and usually visit the other parent.

Joint physical custody doesn’t always mean that the children must spend exactly half the time with each parent. Often, the children spend a little more time with one parent than the other because it is too hard to split the time exactly in half. If one parent has the child more time than the other parent that parent is known as the primary custodial parent.

The Los Angeles child custody attorneys at Boyd Law are equally comfortable in achieving your child custody goals through either child custody mediation or child custody litigation in any California court. Our child custody lawyers are equally versed in cases involving either marital – divorce law or domestic partnership – palimony law.

How are the Best Interests of the Child Defined?

When determining what is in the best interest of a child during your divorce, California custody law allows a court a large degree of discretion, and a judge can consider many different factors. Some of those factors include:

  • A child’s age and desires
  • Parental stability
  • Parental criminal history
  • Ability of the parent to care for the child

A court will use these factors and more to decide where your children should spend most of their time.

Employment Status of Custodial Parents

These three visual charts below illustrate the employment status of custodial parents by gender and poverty status (1999–2011).  Some of the bigger more eye opening facts and statistics I took away from these charts are that the level of full-time employment for custodial mothers decreased from 52.3 percent in 2001 to 47 percent in 2011.  Full-time work for custodial fathers also decreased during this same period.  Custodial fathers full-time work level went from 71.7 percent in 2001 to 65.9 percent in 2011.  For custodial parents under the poverty line in 2011 around 15.1 percent were employed full time, and about half were not employed at all.

Custodial Fathers Employment Status:

Custodial Mothers Employment Status:

Custodial Parents Below Poverty Employment Status:

Los Angeles Child Custody Law Firm

Parents can rely on the experience of the Los Angeles family attorneys at Boyd Law in obtaining child custody judgments. Our Southern California family law firm fights hard to make the system work for our clients. We understand that it is often in the best interests of the child for the parents to come to an amicable agreement regarding custody or visitation. Los Angeles child custody attorneys at Boyd Law will guide you through this tough process in a satisfactory manner. Contact us today for a free consultation.


“You all have been phenomenal in this case. I appreciate every effort you all have put in to this to have the truth be seen in court. I believe we made history, as I have legal rights to my daughter. I want to thank Karie and Tom for the crucial and priceless information/advice you both have given me regarding taking my power back and learning to respond rather than react. Karie, you especially. I may be the same person but I behave differently.” – Mary