Allows a party to choose to have a jury trial in child-custody and dependent-child cases
Allows a party in child-custody cases to choose that a jury, rather than a judge, determines who receives legal custody of the child. Prohibits the judge from rejecting a jury’s decision in child-custody cases. Allows a parent in dependency-child proceedings to choose that a jury, rather than a judge, determines whether a child should be declared a dependent of the court.
Unknown ongoing net fiscal impact on state courts that would depend significantly on (1) how the measure is interpreted and implemented by the courts and (2) how individuals respond to the ability to demand a jury trial in child custody and juvenile dependency jurisdictional hearings. Potential ongoing increase in county costs that could reach the low millions of dollars annually related to juvenile dependency jurisdictional cases-some or all of which could be shifted to the state.