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Does Working Long Hours Affect a Father's Custody Chances?

When facing a divorce, concerns over custody are daunting. For fathers who have worked long hours to support their family, the prospect of losing their child is especially dismaying. When the court reviews a parent for custody it considers many factors contributing to the overall well being of the child. 

Custody in California

California law states that judges must award custody according to what is in the best interest of the child. A judge reviews each parent to determine who should have custody of the child. The judge considers each parent's relationship with the child, parenting skills and the stability of the home environment. The ability of each parent to meet the child's emotional and physical needs is also a factor.

In California, a child's wishes may also be taken into consideration. Although there is not a specific chronological age when a child can voice their opinion on custody disputes, the California rules of court state the child must be of a sufficient age and capacity to have a reasonable preference. If the child is at least 14 years old, they must be permitted to address the court and state their wishes regarding custody or visitation. However, the final decision is made by the judge.

Working fathers

A father who works full time seeking custody of his child will likely be asked about how his work schedule coincides with proposed child care arrangements. Full time workers can be granted sole custody so long as their employment does not interfere with their ability to parent their child.

A working father should not be punished for having a demanding job. Long hours or an unpredictable schedule does not necessary mean a father cannot have custody. He just needs to prove that his work will not negatively impact his parenting.

Having proposed child care arrangements and details about your work schedule can help alleviate the court's concerns.

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