There is no doubt that a divorce is a stressful situation, yet when children are involved, child custody is generally the most contentious issue. Unfortunately, there are times when the underlying reason for child custody isn't about the children. On the contrary, sometimes both parties want to see their children as much as possible, ending up in the same predictable sad result.
Hence, knowing the complexities of divorce cases and the associated child custody hearings, Thomas Law Group, PC., developed an informative guide to better prepare for child custody.
Custody is Determined by the Court
During divorce, marriage, or annulment proceedings, the issue of child custody becomes a matter for the Court to determine. The Court considers the child's needs, the obligor's ability to pay, custody arrangements, and the child support guidelines. The Court retains the power to alter the custody arrangements until the child turns 18 or is emancipated.
Difference Between Categories of Custody
Legal child custody includes the right to decide about the child's education, religion, health care, and other important concerns. Moreover, legal custody means the right to determine the child's upbringing, including education, health care, and religious training.
In contrast, Physical custody and residence mean the routine daily care and control and where the child lives. Physical child custody is awarded to one parent with whom the child will live most of the time. In most cases, both parents continue to share legal child custody, but one parent gains physical child custody.
Visitation rights allow the non-custodial parent (the person without child custody) time to spend with their child. A typical arrangement is that one parent gets custody of the child, and the other parent is given visitation rights. However, it is essential to clarify that, according to the law, visitation rights and child support payments are different issues; therefore, though visitation has yet to be allowed, one is required to pay.
Importance of Relying on an Experienced Attorney
Given the complexity of child custody matters and the importance of the outcome, it may be advisable to contact an attorney. The attorney should know several child custody evaluators or guardians and items that they have worked with successfully. If you proceed with a child custody action without an attorney, you act as your own attorney.
At Thomas Law Group PC., we understand how difficult this situation may be. Therefore, you can trust Child Custody & Support Attorney at Thomas Law Group.