5 Commonly Asked Questions About Custody
Filing for divorce is never easy, especially when children are involved. Many couples will often put off separating to avoid breaking up their family when sometimes the best solution is to end the marriage.
In a perfect world, everyone would file for joint custody and have an ideal visitation schedule for both parties and everything would be totally amicable but some situations make such compromises impossible and there’s nothing wrong with that.
Below, I’ve taken 5 of the most commonly asked questions about custody to help give you some insight on information you need to know before filing for divorce.
Is it necessary to file for a divorce to get custody and visitation?
No. When the only issue you’re facing is the custody and/or support of your child(ren) such as in the case of a temporary separation, you can still file a petition with the Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court in the county where the child(ren) live.
If the parents cannot agree on child custody and visitation issues, on what basis will the court decide?
When it comes to determining custody, the court shall give primary consideration to the best interests of the child. In most cases, the courts try to assure minor children receive frequent and continuing contact with both parents when it’s appropriate and depending upon the situation. They also encourage both parents to share the responsibility of raising their children. The court also allows for o presumptions or inference of law in favor of either.
What are the different types of custody?
Sole custody, which simply means that one person retains responsibility for the care and control of the child. Joint custody refers to several different types of custody under one name. Joint legal custody, where both parents retain joint responsibility for the care and control of the child, joint physical custody where both parents share physical and custodial care, or any combination of the two. There is also shared custody which refers to specific arrangements where the parents willingly share the responsibility and make decisions together concerning the needs of the child.
What factors will the court look to in deciding child custody?
- Age and physical/mental conditions of the child
- Age and physical/mental conditions of both parents
- Relationship existing between each parent and each child
- Needs of the child
- Role each parent has played and will play in the future upbringing of the child
- Reasonable preference of the child
- History of family abuse
- Any other factors the courts deem necessary to consider in making a proper determination
Is a court order for child custody ever modified?
Yes. A custody or visitation decree is most definitely subject to modification in certain circumstances. If a significant change in circumstances has taken place since the court decree was made and if a change will best serve the needs of the child, a modification is warranted.
Do you have a question regarding custody but is not covered in this article? Leave in comments below and we will get back to you shortly! [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]