A divorce is really hard on not just the two spouses but also the children who are involved. Child custody is the main factor when finalizing a divorce agreement. Among the most-asked concerns about child custody are where the children will live and which parent will make the majority of decisions about the children.
There are two types of child custody typically awarded to a parent. The first is physical custody, which deals with where the children will live and spend most of their time. In some cases, joint custody will be awarded if there is an opportunity for the children to spend nearly equal time with both parents. This type of custody will really only benefit the children if the parents live fairly close to each other and the children’s schedules can remain consistent. In other cases, the children will live with one parent and have visitation time with the other.
If a parent is awarded legal custody, that means that parents can make most of the decisions regarding most aspects of the children’s lives. Here, too, joint legal custody may be awarded and both parents can make these decisions in cooperation. Sometimes, in the spirit of fairness, one parent may ask for joint legal custody and that could be a mistake if that individual is the one who actually gives the majority of the physical care to the children. Child support payments will be lowered if he or she is not awarded sole legal custody.
The parent who hopes for sole physical and legal child custody will want to increase the likelihood of gaining custody. This could happen by taking such action as being the principal caretaker for the children as well as staying involved in the major areas of their lives. Staying apprised of all relevant child custody laws may also be advisable.