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Understanding the Different Types of Child Custody

Understanding the Different Types of Child Custody

Posted By Meyers Law Group, P.C. || 20-Feb-2013

A divorce can be difficult for any couple, and when there are children involved it can become that much harder. Having to discuss the different options of child custody can be overwhelming, because in some cases you and your spouse may not have the same goals in mind. When it comes to determining child custody, there are a few different categories that are important to understand before jumping into the process. If you are considering a divorce, please contact a trusted Long Island divorce attorney at the Meyers Law Group, P.C. today to learn more about custody in your specific situation.

As stated, there are a few different ways to look at custody, and the first of them being physical custody. Physical custody means that one or both parents have the right to have the child living in their home. Depending on the state, both parents may have the privilege to have what is called joint custody, in which the children are allowed to live with both of them. For parents who remain close to one another, this is often a smart option that allows the children to cope with the changes of the split by having both still involved in their lives on a regular basis.

Another form of custody is called legal custody, and this means that the parent has authority over the legal matters of their kid's life. Whether this is for medical decisions, schooling, religious practices, etc. this parent will have the say in these choices. Often times both parents, who are fit to care for their children, will receive joint legal custody; meaning that they will have to work together to come to an agreement on these matters. Often time's joint custody is in the best interest of the children; however, there are situations in which this may not be possible or best for the kids. If this is the case for you, with the help of a skilled divorce attorney, you will have the option to fight for soul custody over your children.

Sole custody, then, is defined as one parent being given either physical or legal custody over the children. Again, unless one parents is considered by the court as being incapable of caring for the children, it is very rare that they will offer sole custody to one parent. In most situations, it is in the best interest of the children to have their parents equally involved in their lives. In some cases, even if a parent is given the sole physical custody over the kids (where they live with them), it is common that the court will still offer legal custody to both parents, along with a frequent visitation schedule for the other parent. Parents, it is important to take into consideration what is best overall for your kids after the divorce. Perhaps there is a lot of tension between you and your spouse, and you hope that by fighting for full sole custody you will never have to see them again. This is usually not encouraged, as it may in the long run harm your children. Unless your spouse is deemed unfit or unsafe to you or your children, sharing custody is encouraged.

Going through a divorce can be a complicating process, and even more so when there are the lives of children to take into account. If you or someone you know is considering a divorce and has children, please contact our firm today so we can discuss your case and decide on a suitable course of action. Our firm is committed to helping families, and we want to help you during your divorce. Contact us today for more information!