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Family Court Services (Child Custody)

Family Court Services Division

The Family Court Services Division is responsible for performing Child Custody Recommending Counseling.

The Child Custody Recommending staff are skilled professionals in the mental health field with a great deal of experience with children. In this process, families work together with an experienced counselor toward the goal of reaching an agreement regarding a parenting plan for their children. A parenting plan includes a general or specific schedule of days, times, weekends, holidays, vacations, counseling, and treatment services. The appointment may last one to two hours in total.

Currently, all child custody recommending counseling sessions are completed by a telephone or video conference on a date scheduled by the Court.

Important Information

All parents will appear remotely for Court ordered Child Custody Recommending Counseling through a telephone or video conference call. You will be contacted one business day before your scheduled appointment and on the day of your scheduled appointment to confirm the specific time of your appointment. Please note that you may receive a telephone call from a phone number that is blocked, private or an out of state area code and number.

General Information

Before participating in a scheduled Child Custody Recommending Counseling appointment, please review the documents listed below that will provide a description of the Family Court Services process. You will also need to watch the orientation video Orientation to Family Court Mediation and Child Custody Recommending Counseling . This video describes the importance of parents participating in developing a parenting plan and what occurs during the Child Custody Recommending Counseling appointment.

Complete the Confidential Information for Child Custody Recommending Counseling form , for Spanish,  click here and mail it to the Merced Superior Court, Family Law Division at 627 W. 2stst Street, Merced, CA 95340 at least one (1) week before your scheduled appointment.

If you would like each party to meet with the Family Law Court Services (FCS) Child Custody Recommending Counselor separately and at separate times, please fill out the Request for Separate Child Custody Recommending Counseling form.

For information on the Family Court Services process, click here . For Spanish, click here click here.

Supervised Visitation Information

A Guide for Non-Professional Providers

Supervising a visitation is an important job to supervise a parent visits with his or her child. This guide answers common questions about being a provider of supervised visitation.

All Non-Professional Providers must complete a Declaration of Supervised Visitation Provider (Nonprofessional). This document must be completed by the person providing the supervised visitation. Please file this document with the Superior Court of California, County of Merced, Family Law Clerks Office.

Additional Resources

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