What You Need to Know About Child Custody

Child custody is more than merely a legal matter. It affects both the parents and the children and is even considered to be a serious social issue. Most couples are usually anxious about the custody of their children when going through a divorce. Here are a couple of things that parents ought to know.

Seek to Find a Resolution Before Going to Court
Child custody decisions are made by the judge when the couple fails to agree on how they’ll share the custody of their children. A common misconception is that couples have to fight bitterly in court over their children. However, 90% of couples usually come to an agreement just before going to court.

State and Jurisdiction
Different states have varying laws related to child custody. If you have lived in several states with your children, you may want to know if the laws in that state will be applicable for your situation.
In the United States, this is determined by the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act, which outlines the rules that will be used to decide which state will determine custody. Usually it is the state the child was living in 6 months prior to the divorce.

Legal and Physical Custody
Legal custody gives the right to make important decision on aspects related to a child’s life and may include education, religion, and lifestyle. Physical custody, on the other hand, determines where the child will live.

Get a Lawyer
Divorce and separation is often characterized by conflicts and negative emotions. It is easy for a couple to get caught up in these emotions which can make finding a resolution difficult. People often make bad decisions when they are in this state of emotional distress. A lawyer can help you make a more objective decision. Make a point of consulting a lawyer for advice before you make any major decisions regarding the custody of your children.

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