Types Of Child Custody

By: Caksut | Posted: 02nd February 2010

Once a divorce proceedings start to run, the ultimate question asked by everyone is: who will get primary child custody?

Together with the legal arguments and other considerations in nullifying a marriage, there are other legal questions brought to the court. One of the most important, of course, is the decision on who will get primary custody of the children.

In most cases, the divorcing parents can come into a mutual agreement. Setting aside their differences, and with the help of their respective attorneys, they arrive on a shared custody.

Basically, they would agree to a 50/50 legal as well as the physical custody of the children. With this mutual decision, these kinds of parents have nothing in their minds but the welfare of their children.

However, not all cases close this way. There are many disputes on child custody that do not come to an immediate resolution. Some divorced parents cannot see eye to eye, given the many legal arguments and law interpretations.

Like any other disputes, these cases are filed and settled in court. There is a hearing, and sometimes it can become protracted and expensive on both parties. It is good to familiarize oneself on the various types of child custody settlements.

Legal custody

This grants the guardian the right to make long-standing decisions regarding the future of the child or children. These would include all the key aspects of the well-being of the child - education, medical care, religious upbringing and others.

Usually, both parents are awarded joint legal custody, unless one of them is found to be unfit or unable to make the right decisions. Legal custody is not the same as physical custody which concerns issues on where the child will reside.

Physical custody

This is the right granted to the everyday care of the child. The parent with physical custody can dictate where the child will live.

The latest custody provisions give physical custody to the custodial parent and grant visitation rights and legal custody to the non-custodial parent. These visitation rights also offer exclusive time with the child every other weekend, alternating major holidays, and a number of weeks during vacations.

Sole custody

Sole custody gives the custodial parent exclusive physical and legal rights over the child. However, this type is rare, and is generally restricted to cases where one parent is deemed in poor condition or is deemed irresponsible (drug addiction or child abuse, etc).

Except for granted periods of visitation with the child, the non-custodial parent does not have the physical nor legal custody rights on the child.

Joint custody

A joint custody order has two parts - joint legal custody and joint physical custody.

Joint legal custody means both parents will share in major decisions regarding the child. The custody order spells out the issues where the parents must share decisions.

The time the child spends with each parent is referred in the joint physical custody. The amount of time shared is flexible and depends on the arrangement of both parents. They can be equally divided, or one may only have agreed time periods.

In the event both parents cannot correctly assume child custody (substance abuse, mental health problems, incarceration, etc.), the court can arrange temporary guardianship or foster care for the child.

Get more tips and guidelines on How to Win Child Custody
, visit: www.childcustody.getmytips.com


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Tags: grants, provisions, welfare, custodial parent, attorneys, child custody, guardian, divorce proceedings, eye to eye, child education, visitation rights, physical custody