Deciding Child Custody Is More Complicated than You Think

Child holding figure in shape of happy family

If parents do not want to stay together, a proper child custody arrangement needs to be set up to reflect their parental decisions. For some parents, it is a mutual decision, but for some, it requires additional court intervention. Whether or not you are divorced, the custody arrangement should be legally approved for you and your child's benefit. If the case takes you to the courtroom to determine child custody despite negotiations, consult a family attorney in Oklahoma City, OK, and place these decisions in the hands of a judge.

Separate Options for Custody

Custody is granted in one of several ways, depending on the child's needs and the parenting skills of both parties. In most cases, the court chooses to grant shared custody to both parents, which means that they share parental responsibilities in one way or another. However, the court may sometimes decide to grant primary custody to one parent. When primary custody is approved to one parent, visitation rights are granted to the other parent unless extreme circumstances give the court reason to prohibit contact.

Considerable Factors

A custody issue is brought to the court by a family attorney in Oklahoma City, OK, and handled by a family law judge who aims to find a parenting plan that works the best for the child.

Judge with his gavel and hammer

To ensure the child’s best interests, the judge considers some different factors including:

  • How the child interacts with each parent

  • The relationship of the child with their siblings and others in the household of each parent

  • The involvement of the child in their community

  • Who was the primary caregiver of the child in the past

  • How the parent takes care of the child

  • The emotional, physical, and mental health of each parent

When the court examines the ability of each parent to take care of the child, some factors are considered:

  1. Locations of the parent’s home to the child’s school and other institutions,

  2. The parents' work schedules to determine they can give the necessary time to the child,

  3. Their lifestyle so that it does not affect the child badly

  4. Their home stability and job security

  5. Any record of domestic violence and abuse.

If the child is mature and capable enough to have an opinion on their custody, the court will also consider the child's wishes for the parenting plan.

While these facts can help you prepare for the child's custody, it is essential to understand that every custody case is unique and can differ. If you are going for a divorce with children or separating from the parent of your children, or want to modify the existing plan, you should discuss it with a family attorney.

You can consult an experienced family attorney in Oklahoma City, OK at the Handley Law Center,so that you can get the right guidance and deserving custody. Remember, it is for the best interest of your child, and the court will grant the custody accordingly.

** Disclaimer: This blog article is not legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship.