What is your vision of your child custody arrangement?
Kids are part of many people's family dreams. Saying "I do" often is a first step toward the growing of a family. When a marriage doesn't work out for one or both spouses, the sadness of that reality is commonly most linked to the children that the union produced.
Family law attorneys understand the sincere emotion behind the common, important phrase parents say: "We just want the kids to be okay." Divorce is a major change for the children involved, but family courts in California prioritize the protection of kids' best interests in all cases.
But what are the legal options that supposedly provide a stable life for children of divorce?
There are multiple custody arrangements that will dictate the day to day routine and rights within your family after a divorce:
Joint legal custody: Parents will share the authority to make decisions about big life factors for their kids. These factors include issues such as education and health. If there is an issue that may have significant impact on the kids' welfare, both parents have a say in the matter.
Joint physical custody: Both parents will get physical time with their kids. This means that the kids will live with each parent at different times. A court can decide the periods of time with each parent or parents can do that if they are able to do so agreeably.
Sole physical custody: This is an arrangement that some parents might fear or for which they might fight. This arrangement means that kids would live primarily with one parent. As a rule, the kids will have specific parenting time with the other parent as determined by the court or the parents.
Sole legal custody: A parent who has/is awarded sole legal custody has the right to make all the major decisions affecting the kids, often with some notice to the other parent. An order for sole legal custody is not common and usually only granted where the court has serious concerns about both parents being able to work together for the kids benefit.
How do you visualize your kids' futures and the future of you and your spouse as parents after divorce? Do you strongly believe child custody should be arranged one way? Are you more flexible and eager to work amicably with your spouse to arrange a parenting situation that is in your kids' best interests? Your divorce lawyer should listen to your hopes and goals and help you reach the future that best suits your needs and the interests of your children.