Child Custody & Visitation

Costa Mesa Child Custody and Visitation Attorney

Family Law Attorneys in Irvine, CA

Attorney Joyce Komanapalli Jones is a reliable and compassionate litigator who will do her best to protect your rights as a parent and ensure your goals and needs are addressed during your custody negotiations. Attorney Jones understands that custody negotiations can be legally complex and emotionally draining, so she will do her best to guide you through the process with personalized attention and professional support.

Child Custody Options

There are two kinds of child custody options in California – legal custody and physical custody. Legal custody regards to decision-making authority for the child on matters like healthcare and education, and physical custody refers to who the child resides with. Legal custody can be joint, where both parents share the decision-making rights and responsibilities, or sole, where only one parents has the decision-making rights. Similarly, physical custody can be joint, where the child lives with both parents according to an agreed-upon schedule, or sole (also called “primary”), where the child lives with one parent and may visit the other.

It is possible for a judge to order joint legal custody but not joint physical custody. This means that both parents will share the responsibility for making important decisions in the child’s lives, but the child will live with one parent for most of the time. The parent who does not have physical custody usually has visitation with the child.

Types of Visitation

Visitation, also called “time-share” or “parenting time,” is a plan for how the parents will share time with the child. A parent who has the child less than half of the time is allowed visitation with the child. Visitation orders will vary depending on the best interests of the child, the situation of the parents, and other relevant factors.

There are a few different types of visitation including:

  • Scheduled
  • Reasonable
  • Supervised

Visitation according to a schedule entails a schedule detailing the dates and times that the child will be with each parent. Visitation schedules can include holidays, special occasions (e.g., birthdays, Mother's Day, Father's Day), and school vacations.

Reasonable visitation orders do not necessarily detail when the child will be with each parent but are usually rather open-ended and allow the parents to decide between them. This type of visitation plan works for parents who get along very well and can be flexible and communicate well with one another.

Supervised visitation is used when the child’s safety and well-being require that visits with the other parent be supervised by an adult or a professional third-party agency. Supervised visitation may also be used in cases where a child and a parent need time to become more familiar with each other or need to slowly get to know each other again.

In special cases, a court can order no visitation when visiting with the parent, even with supervision, would be physically or emotionally harmful to the child. In these cases, the court deems it not in the best interest of the child for the parent to have any contact with them.

Schedule your free consultation with the Law Offices of Joyce Komanapalli Jones online or at (949) 264-0323 for legal support today.

“Best Interest” of the Child

As mentioned above, judges must determine custody and visitation according to the “best interest of the child.” This includes factors like:

  • the child’s age;
  • the child’s health;
  • the emotional ties between the parents and the child;
  • the ability of the parents to care for the child;
  • any history of family violence or substance abuse; and
  • the child’s ties to school, home, and their community.

In most cases, parents can make their own agreements for custody and visitation without the court’s influence, though the final agreement must be approved by the court. If the parents cannot agree, though, the judge will likely order the couple to mediation with a mediator from Family Court Services to facilitate the discussion. If the parents cannot agree in mediation, they will meet with the judge who will make the final custody and visitation decision. So, parents should seek to negotiate between themselves or in mediation if they do not wish to default to a court decision. An attorney can better help streamline the negotiation process and ensure the parent’s rights are protected.

Contact Attorney Joyce Komanapalli Jones Today

If you are currently involved in a custody battle, do not hesitate to reach out to an experienced custody and visitation lawyer immediately. The outcome of your custody order will depend on the best interests of the child evaluated by the court. An experienced legal professional like Attorney Joyce Komanapalli Jones can examine the facts of your situation and ensure your parental rights are not being encroached upon in negotiation with your spouse or in trial. It is best to have a lawyer beside you whether you negotiate individually with your spouse, in mediation, or before a judge.

Contact the Law Offices of Joyce Komanapalli Jones online or by phone at (949) 264-0323 today for legal support in your custody and visitation case.

Why Choose the Law Offices of Joyce Komanapalli Jones

  • Experienced

    Attorney Joyce Komanapalli Jones has over 15 years of experience. She is committed to promoting peace, stability, and freedom for individuals and families throughout California while guiding them through the complexities of the legal system.

  • Responsive

    Communication is a key differentiator in our practice. We want you to feel informed about the status of your case every step of the way. Our goal is to never leave you guessing on where we are at with your case.

  • Personal Attention

    We sit down with every client to give them the personal attention their case needs. We want to build a relationship with you and understand the importance of fostering a comfortable environment.

Awarded & Top Rated

  • AVVO Client's Choice
  • Top Rated Lawyer 2020
  • Top Rated Lawyer 2021

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