Child custody cases are often the most difficult and emotionally charged aspects of family law. If you are contemplating divorce and you have minor children or you need to establish or modify an existing child custody order or informal arrangement, you need an experienced child custody attorney. When awarding physical and legal custody, the court will make its decision utilizing the best interests of the child standard. In order to do so, the court will look at several relevant factors. The following list includes some of the factors that the court will consider.
There are two types of custody of minor children: physical custody and legal custody. Physical custody is the actual physical possession and control of a minor child. Physical custody is determined by the amount of overnights each parent spends with the minor children. There are several types of physical custody, including:
1. Sole physical custody. Sole custody is the award of custody rights to one parent with no custody rights to the other parent.
2. Primary physical custody. Primary custody is the right of one parent to have the majority of custodial time with the minor children.
3. Partial physical custody. Partial custody is the right to take possession of a minor child or minor children away from the custodial parent and may include the right to have overnight custody with children.
4. Shared or joint physical custody. Shared or joint physical custody is the term used to designate frequent and continuing contact between the children and both parents.
5. Visitation. Visitation is the right to spend time with a minor child or minor children, but not the right to remove the child or children from the custodial parent’s presence or control.
Legal custody is the right to make important decisions regarding education, religion and medical care. The legal custody of the minor children is often shared between the parents. Under a shared legal custody arrangement, the parent who has physical custody of the minor children makes the routine day-to-day decisions impacting the children. The parents share the responsibility and need to agree to all major decisions concerning the minor children.
It is important that you have the representation of an experienced family law attorney who will review the above factors with you to ensure that your best case is presented to the court. Having the assistance of an experienced family law attorney like the Law Offices of Williams and Scheetz to guide you through the process will prove to be invaluable.
Williams & Scheetz
935 Second Street Pike,
Richboro, PA 18954-1549
Phone: (215) 322-7340
Fax: (215) 322-0237