Child custody is a very serious matter in which emotions run high. While there are times when just one parent wants physical custody of a child, sometimes both do and that can be quite a challenge for the parents and the family.
There are two different types of custody:
- Legal custody – A parent with legal custody has the responsibility of making educational and health decisions, as well as decisions that affect the overall welfare of the child.
- Physical custody – A parent with physical custody is responsible for the day-to-day care of the child. This is the parent that the child lives with.
If one parent has both legal and physical custody, then that parent has sole custody. Nonetheless, physical and/or legal custody can be shared by the parents, which then gives them joint custody.
If you are going through a divorce and child custody is one of the issues, you need an attorney who is well-versed in the law and how to use it to help you in your case. Even if you were never married to the other parent, your Minneapolis family law lawyer can help you through custody matters any time they arise.
The Best Interest Of The Child
When parents don’t agree on custody, a representative of the court will go through a 13 point checklist to determine what is in the best interest of the child. The checklist is as follows:
- The child’s preference of which parent they live with, especially when the child is old enough to make this decision.
- The desires of the parents
- Which parent is currently the primary caregiver
- The relationship the child has with each parent
- The interaction the child has with each parent, sibling, and other significant people in their life
- The child’s adjustment to home, school, and community
- The length of time the child has lived in a stable and satisfactory environment and their desire to continue living in that environment
- The permanence of the family unit
- The mental and physical health of all parties, but the disabilities of children or parents don’t factor into the decision
- The ability of the parents to give the children love, affection, and guidance and the ability to continue raising the child in their culture, religion, and education
- The child’s cultural background
- Whether or not there has been domestic abuse and what effect it has had on the child
- The willingness of each parent to allow the other parent to have contact, except in cases where domestic abuse has occurred
Once the representative has gathered all of the information, they will give their recommendation to the judge.
An Attorney You Can Trust
Your Minneapolis Family Law Attorney will guide you throughout the process, giving you information that you need and telling you what to expect. When you know what to expect, you are more likely to move through the process more confidently than you would otherwise. By having knowledge of how child custody works, you can make decisions that can help you achieve the results that you need for you and your child.
Contact A Minneapolis Family Law Lawyer
Child custody are very sensitive matters in which emotions can run very high. When each parent wants the child or cannot decide on a sound custody arrangement, it may be necessary for the court to become involved. In order to be guided through the legal process and push for the result you want, it is important to have a child custody attorney by your side every step of the way. To learn how the Olson Law Firm can advocate for you and your child, call today at 612-816-2322 to schedule a free consultation.