Joint Custody Lawyers
What Is Joint Custody?
- Joint legal custody refers to the parental duties and the fact that an important decision regarding the child must be made and agreed upon by both parents, such as medical treatments, religious teachings, and schooling.
- Joint physical custody refers to the time spent by each parent with the child.
How Does Joint Custody Work?
Either the parents or (if they can't agree) the Court will decide how to divide the time a child spends with each parent, and who is permitted to make decisions in the child's life. Courts favor joint legal custody awards because they want both parents' involvement. However, joint physical custody is sometimes not possible due to a number of factors, including:
- age and maturity of the child
- school schedules
- distance between parents' homes
- child's preference
- disruption to child's life
- reasonable time with each parent
Is Joint Custody Burdensome?
Both joint physical and legal custody can be burdensome to all parties involved. Parents have to both bear the costs of maintaining a home for their child and may have to cooperate closely with their former spouse.
For the child, joint custody can be damaging because they may have two sets of friends, two homes, and may have to be peacemaker between two fighting parents.
Why Should I Use Joint Custody If It's So Burdensome?
Most states favor joint physical and legal custody because both parents often want to live with their child. Joint custody is a good way for both parents to influence and provide guidance to their children.
Although states favor using joint custody, situations like child abuse, drug use, or inappropriate behavior may be used to eliminate joint custody as an alternative.
Do I Need an Attorney to Help Me With My Joint Custody Case?
Separating from your spouse is a very stressful situation that can be turned even worse by fighting over child custody. Consult a local family law attorney to understand your rights and help you secure as much time with your child as possible.
Consult a Lawyer - Present Your Case Now!
Last Modified: 01-14-2014 01:44 PM PST
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