Child Custody Rights
Child custody is a tough issue to deal with. What child custody rights do you have, and who decides? Something to always keep in mind is that no matter how hard child custody battles are on the parents they are even tougher on the child.
Child custody rights are decided by a family court judge with a number of different outcomes. The more people with possible interest in the child the more child custody rights can become complicated. Biological parents are generally favored in child custody decisions however there are some other possibilities.
- Biological parents are of course considered, maybe one or both
- Grandparents also may be considered
- Legal guardians other than the parents may be involved
- Even step parents may have custody rights
Thankfully in most instances the best interest of the child or children is taken into account when custody rights are determined. These rights specify who will have physical and legal custody of the child. The payments for child support are also figured out in custody rights cases.
In around 70 percent of child custody cases the mother is given primary custody, Due to a bias by many family law judges that mothers are better caretakers.
Roughly one in five cases award joint custody, in which both parents enjoy an equal amount of custody rights over their children. In situations where there is no evidence of abuse or neglect the judge will generally allow the parents to work out the scheduling themselves.
Custody rights entail both legal and physical responsibilities of the parents. Legal custody rights
allow a parent to make major decisions on things that are involved in his or her children’s life
such as religion, education, and healthcare. Physical custody rights allow a parent to the child
stay with him or her for good.
Often child custody rights can be worked out between the parents without the need for mediation. This can be very beneficial for all parties involved especially the children. Unfortunately if a meeting of the minds cannot be reached mediation will be necessary.
Mediation refers to the process that involves intercession of an independent third party
to aid parents in making decisions about their custody rights. It can help speed up the process of
coming to an agreement of both parties. Once an agreement has been reached and approved by the
court, the terms of this agreement can be immediately implemented. If disagreements involving
custody rights still ensue, a court hearing will proceed to determine who gets which custody
A custody hearing can be very stressful for all involved, most importantly the children. During the custody hearings, the judge will consider several factors before determining the custody rights of each parent. Many times experts such as psychologists will be employed to evaluate the child custody situation. Some of the
factors that a judge looks into when deciding custody rights include the age of the child, past
behavior of the parents at home, preference of the child on who will take care of him or her,
stability of the parents’ home, the amount of time a parent can devote for taking care of the
child, and the parents’ ability to finance the child’s needs. Children may be invited in the court
hearings to testify or to speak privately with the judge.
With this basic understanding of what may be the process involved in determining child custody rights the next step is to seek legal help. Choose a lawyer that is experienced in family law and child custody disputes. Note that only an attorney is equipped to give you legal advice whether in child custody or any other legal matter. We here at JRoyd are not attorneys and only wish to share observations and opinions. So good luck with your child custody battle, and please try to see things through your children’s eyes and what is best for them when considering what child custody rights you seek.
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