With several different types of child custody, a family going through the divorce process can easily become frustrated and confused. Fortunately, a divorce attorney can provide families with the relief and legal advocacy they need to make the right decision.
When a couple no longer wishes to be married, they must make pivotal decisions regarding property division, spousal support, and child custody. Child custody, one of the most troubling aspects of the divorce, is much more complex than many people believe. There are several different layers to child custody that are all as equally important as the next; child custody is simply an umbrella term that covers nearly all matters related to the children. When the family has to reach agreements on child custody, there are two types of custody they must decide upon: legal custody and physical custody.
Legal custody is the type of custody that allows a parent to make important decisions for the child, including religion, education, and medical care. Essentially, this type of custody designates which parent will be the decision maker for the child or children. In many cases, if a family court believes that both parents should have an equal say in this matter, they may award joint legal custody to both parents. This is usually best when the parents are able to have a functioning relationship with one another or a relationship that would not interfere with their decision making when it comes to their children.
The second type of custody that must be taken into account is called physical custody. Just as this sounds, this type of custody determines which physical residence the child or children will live at. In cases where one parent is awarded primary physical custody, they are able to have control over where the child resides so long as it allows for a visitation schedule by the parent who is not awarded physical custody. Joint physical custody, on the other hand, is a common decision made by a court when both parents live nearby each other and can split the time with their children.
Historically, many family courts have been known to side with the mother when it comes to issues of child custody, physical custody, and legal custody. In many cases, the mother will be awarded sole custody, even if she is not necessarily the best fit to care for her children. As this injustice has been unveiled, many more courts are pushing for joint custody and primary custody for the fathers where applicable.
If you are seeking divorce and would like to find more information about child custody matters, do not wait to contact a divorce lawyer today. You will find that having your rights protected during a child custody battle is pivotal, especially if you are fighting your spouse to retain custody of your children. Both legal custody and physical custody are complex areas of the law, and without a divorce attorney it may be extremely difficult to decipher the laws surrounding your case. Only an experienced legal advocate should be trusted to properly inform you on your rights and help you secure a favorable outcome with the best interests of your children in mind. Contact a divorce attorney (Jenkinson Legal) as soon as possible to learn more about the different aspects of child custody.