In re Marriage of Carney
Supreme Court of California
598 P.2d 36 (1979)
William Carney (plaintiff) and his wife, Ellen Carney (defendant), separated shortly after they had two children. By written agreement, Ellen relinquished custody of the children to William, who moved from New York to California. After the move, Ellen had no contact with the children other than telephone calls and letters. In California, William, his new partner, and the children all lived together as a family unit in a stable and loving environment. Several years later, William was injured in an accident that left him a quadriplegic and confined to a wheelchair. William purchased a van that was fitted with a wheelchair lift and hand controls to permit him to drive. Subsequently, William filed for divorce from Ellen. Ellen immediately moved for a transfer of custody of the children, claiming that William could not properly care for the children due to his handicap. The trial court agreed that the change in circumstances justified the removal of the children from William’s custody, granted the divorce, and ordered the children to move back to New York under Ellen’s custody. The trial judge noted that William could not play sports or go fishing with his children and thus could not have the type of normal relationship with his children that was enjoyed by non-handicapped fathers. William appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Mosk, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.
Here's why 173,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 14,000 briefs, keyed to 188 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.