How Does Religion Affect Child Custody in California?

Child custody is one of the most challenging aspects of any divorce case. Emotions run high, and each parent wants to get their way. Sometimes parents practice different religions or one parent changes religions after a divorce. It’s natural to feel strongly that your child should be exposed to the religion of your choosing.

However, the court doesn’t get too involved in issues of religion as it affects child custody. The California court is neutral on the subject of religion and will view your case based only on the facts and the best interests of the child. That being said, religion can affect a California child custody case in some ways.

Examples of How Religion Could Play a Role in a CA Child Custody Case

The California court will not decide that one religion is better than another. In fact, they will treat all religions as though they are equal. The only time they would step in regarding religious practices is if there is physical or emotional harm being done to the child.

There are a few ways religion could possibly play a role in child custody, however.

  • Example 1: If you have full legal custody over your child and the noncustodial parent decides to go against your wishes regarding religious practices during visitation, the court may rule against the noncustodial parent. This is because if you have full legal custody, you have the right to make decisions in the best interests of your child. The noncustodial parent does not have that right if they do not have legal custody.
  • Example 2: If you have taken your child to church throughout your child’s life, this could be used as a point in your favor as far as showing parental responsibility. The court may view your devotion to a moral and religious upbringing for your child as demonstrative of good parenting. Alternately, if the other parent has demonstrated immoral behavior, this could be used in your favor with regard to custody issues.

If You Feel Strongly about Religious Issues

Don’t despair that your child will not be raised in accordance with your wishes. There are ways to work out religious issues, particularly outside of the courtroom. Through mediation, you could be able to come to a parenting agreement with your ex regarding the religious rearing of your children. These agreements can be put in writing with help from a lawyer.

Get Ahold of a Child Custody Lawyer Now

Religion is something that many parents take very seriously, and you likely want your child to be raised in a certain faith. Working with a lawyer can help you to secure the best child custody arrangement possible. Lawyers can often help you to see solutions that you may not know are available or that you don’t see.

Reach out to The Law Office of Laurence J. Brock for help with any child custody issues or other legal family matters. Dial 909-466-7661 or complete the case consultation form at the bottom of this web page.

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