If you are getting divorced, one of the most important matters you will need to arrange with your former spouse is child custody. There are two types of custody that must be considered: legal custody and residential custody.
Legal custody defines who has the right to make major decisions in the child’s life about things such as school, religion, and medical care. The two possible legal custody arrangements are:
- Sole legal custody. One parent makes all major decisions for the child in this form of custody. The custodial parent must act in the best interest of the child; if they do not do so, the non-custodial parent can file a motion with the court to object.
- Joint legal custody. Two parents share decisions together for the children. However, if one parent tries to make a major decision alone, the other parent can object. This type of custody arrangement is most often used.
Residential custody outlines where the child will spend most of his time, and it too can be broken into two categories:
- Sole residential custody. In this arrangement, the child spends all overnights with one parent, but this does not negate the other parent’s right to parenting time.
- Shared residential custody. Parents may be able to work out an arrangement that allows the child to spend shared time with each of them. Each parent may have the child a specified number of overnights per week or per month each year.
During a divorce, it is vital that you fight for your right to spend time with your children. For assistance in this important matter, you need the help of Walter K. Schreyer, an experienced divorce attorney who has been in practice since 1973. To schedule a consultation to discuss your situation and develop a plan of action, call (888) 511-2837.