Child Custody Law

A caring Upland, CA, child attorney can help you in your time of need. Law Office of Stephen Gassner is here to offer advice and guidance to help protect the rights of young people and their families. We realize how difficult it can be to handle your emotions when kids are involved in any way. If you seek a compassionate team that can quickly offer you some answers, it's time to contact our Upland, CA, team.

Whether you are fighting for custody of your kids or need monetary support for them, our staff is happy to be of service. We know how important the outcome of your case is to you, especially if you believe your children are at risk when they are not in your custody. This is why we will take a careful look at your case, offering it our personal attention so we do not miss any details. We know our Upland clients appreciate fast answers, which is why we work quickly and keep our schedule flexible.

You should work with an Upland, CA, child attorney who can give you peace of mind as your case unfolds. At Law Office of Stephen Gassner, our professionals are highly trained and trustworthy, and they are ready to work toward protecting the best interests of your children. If you need prompt attention for your case, contact our team in Upland, CA, today.

How are Custody issues decided?

No area of family law brings to the courtroom the tension, anxiety, hostility, volatility and raw emotion as child custody and visitation litigation. Rare is the divorce, dissolution or custody determination in which the parties have been able to set aside personal differences to reach the goal of what is best for the children involved. Most parents pay lip service to this ideal, but often cannot reach it in actuality. Most often a judge will take great pains to get parents themselves to come to a mutually acceptable custody agreement if that is possible. A decision made by a stranger is rarely completely acceptable to all if the attempt has not been made in earnest.

The family court systems of the states usually have several layers of counseling, mediation and conciliation mechanisms in place in an effort to bring warring parents together for the purpose of resolving the issue of what it is in the best interests of their children.

What about visitation?

Generally, a court will grant reasonable visitation rights to a parent unless it is shown that the visitation will be detrimental to the best interests of the child. A non-parent can in the discretion of the court also be granted visitation rights if they have an interest in the welfare of the child—this is generally divided into the area of grandparents, step-parents and other non-parents. It should be noted, however, that this is discretionary. The court may also approve visitation plans and restrictions considering factors relevant to the best interests of the child. A Lead Counsel family law lawyer will guide you through the complicated procedure of child visitation issues.

How is the amount of child support determined?

Federal law now requires that the amount of a child support payment be set in accordance with a guideline. Having a guideline is believed to prevent widely different amounts of child support being ordered from courtroom to courtroom. Guidelines provide an objective basis for the determination of the amount of support to be paid. As a result, most states have established formulas that are used to determine the amount of the payment from one parent to the other. Lead Counsel family law lawyers will safeguard your legal rights and fight for what is fair.

What happens to a father who refuses to pay court ordered child support?

It is against the law for any father, presumed or assumed, to not pay court ordered child support to the custodial guardian, regardless of joint custody. Federal laws permit the interception of tax refunds to enforce child support orders, and other methods of enforcement include wage attachments, seizure of property, suspension of a business license and possible drivers license revocation. Most states have separate Child Support Enforcement agencies in place to oversee these efforts. In the event that none of these attempts are entirely successful, the court of law that issued the child support order can hold the father in contempt and, in the absence of a reasonable explanation for the delinquency, impose a jail term.


Can a divorce action be stopped by one of the spouses?

A no-fault divorce cant be stopped by a spouse because objecting to the other spouses petition for divorce is itself an irreconcilable difference that would justify the divorce. However, a spouse could potentially stop a fault divorce by either convincing the court that he/she was not at fault or by using any of the following defenses.

  1. Condonation - implied approval of anothers activities by treating the person as though the offense were never committed.

  2. Connivance - setting up a situation so that the other person commits a wrongdoing.

  3. Provocation - inciting of another to do a certain act.

  4. Collusion - secret agreement or cooperation between the spouses designed to deceive the judge.

A qualified family law attorney will guide you through the steps of your divorce from beginning to end.


Are there different types of adoption?

Adoptions take place in various forms, and are generally classified as independent, agency, step-parent, relative placement, and adult adoption. Independent adoption occurs when birth parents and adoptive families find each other on their own or through the help of an adoption intermediary, i.e. a pastor, family friend, or doctor. Agency adoptions are handled through a child placement agency and approximately two-thirds of all adoptions in the United States are arranged through agencies.

In a step-parent adoption, the family adopting is a birth parent with a new spouse; this usually succeeds a divorce or spousal death.

Adult adoption is the process whereby a person eighteen years or older is legally adopted by one or more persons eighteen years or older, and relative placement adoption occurs when the birth parent(s) is still a minor, has died or is disabled, or the child has been removed due to abuse and neglect, and another relative assumes physical custody and responsibility for the child.

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