California Guide to Child Custody Topics

Where to begin:

California child custody: Laws & more
Answers to your California child custody questions. How much will it cost? How long will it take? Do I need a lawyer? What is physical custody versus legal custody?

California parenting plan and agreement guidelines
Rules and tips for making a California parenting plan or custody agreement. Follow these guidelines for a plan you can show a mediator and judge or use to settle.

California custody and visitation schedule guidelines
Save time and ensure your custody calendar meets California requirements by using these guidelines. See popular schedules and tips for kids of different ages.

California child support calculator
Instantly determine your child support by entering your incomes, parenting time and number of children. See how different parenting times affect the total.

Staying out of court:

6 alternative ways to decide custody in California
These methods for deciding child custody outside of a courtroom are quickly gaining popularity in California. Could one work for you?

Settling child custody and visitation in California: 3 steps
Settling is considered the best way to decide custody. Follow these steps to do it quickly, with no hiccups. Free templates and forms.

Going to court:

California child custody process: 8 steps
The child custody court process from start to finish, with all the resources you need along the way. How to file, prepare for court and more in California.

Filing for child custody in California: 5 simple steps
Follow five steps while filing to avoid mistakes that can stall your California custody case. Find all the forms you need, learn how to serve papers, and more.

California: Prepare for court-ordered custody mediation
If you enter mediation ready, you're more likely to leave with an agreement and avoid trial. Understand mediation so you get the best custody plan for your children.

California child custody hearings: What to expect
Are you ready for your California child custody hearing? Learn how to prepare, what to bring, possible outcomes and more.

California child custody evaluations
California custody evaluations can play a big role in a judge's ruling. Make sure you know how they work and what's expected of parents.

Child custody trials in California: Go in prepared
California custody trials are complicated — with witnesses, exhibits, multiple sessions. Understand the protocols so you get what's best for your child.

Help with court forms:

Simplify form FL-100 | Add custody requests fast
Form FL-100 can get complicated. Attach a parenting plan to let the court know your desired custody arrangements in an organized format.

Make FL-260 easier | Add custody details quickly
Form FL-260 is a custody petition. You'll need to let the court know what you're asking for. A parenting plan allows you to do this with a single form.

Make FL-300 easier | Request a CA custody order simply
Form FL-300 asks for several attachments to explain custody details. However, you can replace many of them with one parenting plan.

Skip form FL-311 & use your own custody calendar
Form FL-311 is one of many court forms that detail custody requests. Many parents replace FL-311 and supporting forms with a parenting plan.

Make FL-320 simpler | Respond to custody requests easily
Form FL-320 is where you respond to proposed custody arrangements. Attach a parenting plan to make your own detailed proposal.

Help with FL-340 | How to add custody details easily
Form FL-340 is a cover sheet for court orders. Attaching a parenting plan saves you from having to write up the custody arrangements your judge ordered.

Adding to FL-341 to get the best custody agreement
Form FL-341 covers the basics of a custody agreement. Attach a parenting plan to give the court a complete picture of your ideal co-parenting arrangement.

How you can skip FL-341 C, FL-341 D and FL-341 E
Forms FL-341 C, FL-341 D and FL-341 E each detail an element of your custody arrangement. However, you can replace all three with just one parenting plan.

Make FL-355 easy | Skip 3 attachments with a parenting plan
Form FL-355 is a cover sheet for your custody settlement. Replace three attachments with one comprehensive parenting plan.

More about California custody:

California child custody orders: 3 types
Emergency orders, temporary orders, final orders: Learn the differences between the three and which may apply in your situation.

Special circumstances in California child custody
No two California child custody cases are the same. Do you need an interpreter? Child counsel? Supervised visitation? What other considerations are you forgetting?

8 ways to use the Custody X Change app in California
Custody X Change can make your California custody case shorter and simpler, with better outcomes. Use it to replace complicated court forms, settle and more.

California child custody resources and support
Need more information? Direct links to local courts, child support agencies, our California legal sources and beyond.

Explore examples of common schedules

Explore common schedules

Join the 60,000+ other parents who have used our co-parenting tools

Organize your evidence

Track your expenses, journal what happens, and record actual time. Print organized, professional documents.

Co-parent civilly

Our parent-to-parent messaging system, which detects hostile language, lets you collaborate without the drama.

Get an accurate child support order

Child support is based on parenting time or overnights in most jurisdictions. Calculate time instead of estimating.

Succeed by negotiating

Explore options together with visual calendars and detailed parenting plans. Present alternatives and reach agreement.

Never forget an exchange or activity

Get push notifications and email reminders, sync with other calendar apps and share with the other parent.

Save up to $50,000 by avoiding court

Write your parenting agreement without lawyers. Our templates walk you through each step.

Make My Plan