Family Law

Family Law News 2018, Issue 1, Volume 40, No. 1

The Duties and Responsibilities of Minor’s Counsel Under Family Code Section 3042

Stephen D. Hamilton

Stephen D. Hamilton has been an attorney for 22 years, with a practice devoted almost exclusively to family law for 20 of those years. He has been a Certified Specialist in Family Law since 2004. He is currently a member of the California Family Law Executive Committee, for which he is the Legislation Chair. He is a member of ACFLS and serves on the ACFLS Outreach and Amicus Committees. He is also chairperson of the San Luis Obispo County Family Law Section.


In March of 2017, I co-authored and moderated a webinar with the Honorable Timothy Staffel of the Santa Barbara County Superior Court (available through the Family Law Section’s MCLE on demand). The program addressed the issues raised by California Family Code section 3042, the statute that requires consideration of a minor’s preferences regarding custody and visitation. This article focuses on how to carry out your obligations as counsel for a minor when your client has a custodial preference. Your duties and responsibilities are set forth under both section 3042 and the Rules of Court.

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