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The Types Of Child Custody Arrangements

Family Law

There are several different types of child custody arrangements that a judge may grant. The judge will establish a child custody order based on whether the child is living with you, their other parent, or both are sharing custody. The one thing to remember is that the judge will take into consideration the child’s best interests when deciding child custody orders. So the best thing that you can do as a parent who may be fighting for custody, is to do your best to show how you can provide the most comfortable and supportive living space possible. Some parents view child custody as a way to get back at their ex for a separation or divorce, but viewing it in this way misses the main point, which is to take care of the child’s needs and growth.

Sole Legal Custody

As a family Lawyer explains, in a sole legal custody arrangement, one parent has the duty and legal right to make decisions for the child’s health, education, and general welfare. Either you or the other parent will obtain exclusive right to make important choices for your child, such as what religion they practice, where they go to school, plans for travel, residence, and medical care.

Joint Legal Custody

A joint legal custody order means that each parent shares the responsibility and right to make choices for the child’s education, health, and general welfare. Depending on the nature of your relationship with the other parent, this may be a difficult task. Despite being separated or divorced, you will still have to work together to raise your children and come to agreements on various aspects of their life.

Primary Physical Custody

Sole physical custody, or primary physical custody, is when a child will live with one parent but the other will have power of visitation based on court order. So your child will live with the custodial parent, which may be you or the other parent. If you are granted primary physical custody, the other may be given visitation rights so they can continue to have regular contact with their child despite not having custody.

Joint Physical Custody

An arrangement of joint physical custody means that both parents have a significant role and maintain physical custody during certain periods. Based on such a provision, the intent of joint custody is to make sure the child has frequent and consistent contact with you and their other parent. Your child may reside with you and the other parent, but it may or may not be exactly evenly divided depending on the parent’s work schedule and where the child will go to school.

Whether you are hoping to get custody of your child or achieve another arrangement, it helps to consult with a family law firm, as the Law Group of Iowa recommends, so that you can be as prepared as possible for your child custody hearing. Remember, the best approach during this time is to focus on what is best for your child and how you can provide that for them.