How Child Custody is Decided

Apr 24, 2017 by

How Child Custody is Decided

Divorce is a lot of things. It is emotional. It is a time and money drain. And it is a legal nightmare. According to the website of these Austin divorce attorneys, there is a variety of issues that needs to be settled in the divorce process, such as distribution of property, child custody, spousal support, and child support.

Arguably the most stressful of all is child custody, because we are talking about your children here, and the possibility of compromising your relationship with them just because you and your spouse don’t get along anymore.

But how is child custody decided? First, you must understand that there are different kinds of custody. The website of Higdon, Hardy & Zuflacht enumerates them as physical, legal, joint, sole, and split. Physical custody is about who gets the child. Legal custody is about who can make decisions for the child. Joint custody is about both parents sharing time with the child. Sole custody is about a parent gaining both physical and legal custody. Split custody is about siblings being separated between the parents.

What kind of custody is going to be implemented depends on a case-to-case basis, but one core idea rules them all – it is for the best interest of the child. Below are just some of the factors that may influence the child’s best interest:

  • The family’s living standards
  • Both parents’ capability to provide for their child
  • Both parents’ earning capacity
  • Each parent’s expenses in case of granted custody
  • Each parent’s history of abuse and neglect in the household
  • Each parent’s history of crime
  • Each parent’s relationship with the child
  • Each parent’s sacrifices during the marriage
  • The child’s age
  • The child’s preferences
  • The child’s specific needs, such as for disabilities and medical conditions

Child custody is such a complicated matter that there are legal professionals who solely focus on them, such as those from the Law Office of Andrew A. Bestafka, Esq. This is understandable, because each parent in a contested divorce will fight for his or her best interest, including the custody for the children involved.

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