Handling Northern California Bay Area Custody Matters Since 1980
For divorcing parents, child custody is often the most difficult area to agree upon when resolving their issues. The goal of Berkeley attorney Martin "Jamie" Elmer Esq., is always the same: to craft a child custody and visitation agreement that balances the wants of the parents with the needs of the children.
Protecting the Best Interests of Your Children
Child custody and visitation arrangements vary wildly, and can involve a number of different issues including:
- Sole physical custody with one parent; the other parent has visitation rights
- Sole physical custody with one parent; the other parent has no visitation
- Joint/shared custody by both parents.
- One parent wants to move out of state with the child
- Flexible visitation
- Very strict visitation schedules with court-appointed supervision
Compassionate and Personalized Attention
I take your unique family legal concerns into account as I create a common sense legal solution for you. Anger can cloud a parent's judgment; I help to clear the muddy waters by listening carefully to my clients, helping them release some steam and providing them with realistic expectations. Once we have agreed on a course of action, I thoroughly and effectively craft a strategy to obtain the best possible custody arrangement.
Physical and Legal Custody
Physical custody means that the child actually lives with the parent most of the time. Legal custody is when a parent has a say in the child's education, health care, extracurricular activities, dental care and religious training, but may not have physical custody. California law prefers joint legal custody as a way to encourage both parents to play a role in their child's life. Child support is determined based in part on child custody.
Mediation - First Steps Toward a Custody Agreement
California requires that, if parents cannot agree upon a custody and visitation schedule, that they attend mediation. Mediators are therapists who help parents work out custody and child custody arrangements. Parents attend mediation without lawyers. If no agreement is reached, the mediator often recommends a particular visitation schedule. Judges rely heavily on these reports when making their final decision about custody and visitation.
Protecting Your Child's Best Interests
Child custody arrangements can be creative, and can range from none at all for parents who are involved with drugs, are in prison or have untreated mental illness, to fifty-fifty splits for other parents. Visitation can range from flexible, with no set schedule to supervised for only a few hours a week. If need be, visitation can be crafted down to the smallest points, such as drop-off times and places for the children, depending on the parent's ability to communicate effectively. I also take into account grandparents' rights to visitation.
Contact a Berkeley Custody Attorney Today
Martin "Jamie" Elmer, Esq. is recognized as a Certified Family Law Specialist by California State Bar
1919 Addison Street, Suite 105
Berkeley, CA, 94704
- Custodial Parent Move-Aways
- Parenting Time Modifications
- Stepparent Adoptions
- Child Support
- Child Support Enforcement
- Complex High-Asset Division
- Investment Property Assets
- Property, Asset and Debt Division
- Marital Debt
- Prenuptial & Postnuptial Agreements
- Separate & Community Property
- Spousal Support, Alimony
- Domestic Violence
- Domestic Violence Defense
- Orders of Protections and TRO
- Estate Planning for Divorced People
- Second Marriage Estate Planning
- Wills & Trusts
- Family Law Resources
Schedule Free Consultation Today
To speak with Jamie Elmer, our Berkeley, California, family law attorney, please call the number above or email us via the form below. Please fill in all required fields.