Rights of Children Whos
Parents Divorce in California

Do Children of Divorced Parents in California have any Rights?

The simple answer is NO! Not until they are of legal adult age.

Minor children (Below the age of 18 in California, are not considered to have the full legal mental capacity of adults. Typically, minors aren’t granted the rights of adults until they reach the age of 18. Due to the fact that children are still developing, both physically as well as mentally, they typically aren’t regarded as capable of dealing with the same legal rights of their custodial or non-custodial parents as matured adults.

However, children do have some fundamental legal rights as soon as they are born, and they gain some even more rights as they mature.

Childrens Rights Divorced Parents California

Does a Child Have the Right to Refuse Court Ordered Visitation with Non-Custodial Parent?

What age does a child have a say in visitation?

A child’s preference in custody for children age 14 and older. Pursuant to Family Code 3042, when evaluating a child’s choice regarding custody and visitation, the court must listen to a child who is 14 years or older unless the court determines that it is not in the child’s best interest to do so. (Source)

The Answer is Yes and No Depending on Age

According to Case Law Found HERE:

Child’s Refusal To Visit
Implementing a visitation order necessarily turns upon the custodial parent’s ability to make the child available for visitation.

A custodial parent probably has sufficient control over a child of “tender years” to compel the child to visit with the other parent under the terms of the court order; and the custodial parent’s failure to comply would thus be punishable by contempt.

But the rule is otherwise as to teenagers. Technically, teenage children remain subject to their parents’ control until age 18 or marriage (see Ca Fam § 7505). Nonetheless, if a teenage child refuses to visit with the noncustodial parent per the terms of a court order through no fault of the custodial parent, the noncustodial parent is probably left without a remedy.

Simply stated, it is unclear how the custodial parent would have the ability to force the child to visit. [See Coursey v. Super.Ct. (Coursey) (1987) 194 Cal.App.3d 147, 154-156, 239 Cal.Rptr. 365, 369-370–court erred in holding the mother in contempt for violation of visitation order re 14-year-old child because no showing mother had the ability to compel child to visit]

Teen Child Refusing Visitation with Non-Custodial parent

Rights for Children are Born within the U.S.A.

Minor children (Below the age of 18 in California, are not considered to have the sufficient legal mental capacity of adults.

Normally, minors won’t be given the legal rights of adults until they attain the age of 18. Considering that children are still developing, both physically and mentally, they aren’t considered capable of managing the same rights as mature adults.

However, children do have some fundamental lawful rights as soon as they are given birth, and they obtain some additional rights as they grow.

Although children mature psychologically and physically at various rates, generally there are a number of rights that everyone has beginning at their birth. In this country, children are conferred with a right to a secure environment, good nutrition, healthcare, and education. Although father and mothers have the right to raise their children as they choose, if a child is not safe, the state will remove the children from their home. Parents are obligated to meet the child’s basic needs.

Minors additionally have rights under the U.S. Constitution. Specifically, they have the right to equal protection, which means that every child is entitled to the same treatment at the hands of authority regardless of race, gender, disability, or religion. Children are also entitled to due process, which includes notice and a hearing before any of their basic rights are taken away by the government.