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Practice Areas
Divorce
Child Custody
Relocation Of Children
Enforcement of Judgments
Modification of Judgments
Non-Marital Agreements
Paternity
 
 
Child Custody

When the term legal custody is used, it ordinarily refers to the responsibility for making the major decisions about raising a child, such as the child’s education, health care, religious training. The term joint legal custody implies that parents make major decisions together. The parent who is providing direct care for a child is responsible for the day-to-day decisions.

The term physical custody usually corresponds with a child's primary residence, and the term primary physical custody is sometimes used to indicate the primary residence of the child.

Joint physical custody or shared physical custody usually refer to an arrangement in which the child has two homes. Professional opinions differ as to what living arrangements are best for children of various ages. There is general agreement, however, that a young child will need to see a non-custodial parent more often than an older child to maintain a meaningful bond.

Each family has its own history, traditions, and needs, and no one pattern is appropriate of all families. The Court will usually accept a Parenting Plan to which the parents have agreed. Although some families, post-separation, can maintain a highly fluid arrangement, most families benefit from having a set schedule which accommodates some degree of flexibility.

The term visitation is becoming an anachronism in some courts, and many people consider it inappropriate to describe a meaningful parental relationship which fosters the growth and independence of a child.



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