Child custody is the term legal professionals use to define the relationship between a child and his or her parents or legal guardians. It’s almost used exclusively within the context of divorce and separation to describe how both parents should physically care for and visit with their child or children.
There are a few custody arrangement types. Therefore it is helpful for parents dealing with custody issues to understand the options that may be available to them. Each type carries different implications, so getting it right is critical to the success of the relationship you share with your child and your ex.
However, speaking with a child custody attorney in Phoenix is best if you have specific questions. You can contact DeShon Laraye & Pullen PLC for an initial custody arrangement evaluation. Schedule yours today by calling (602) 461-7818 or submitting a message via our online contact form.
No matter what your family’s structure is, deciding upon a child custody arrangement that acts in the best interest of your child is a critical first step toward living life under the new norm.
Here are the four types of child custody arrangements in Arizona that may help you and your family:
1. Legal Custody
Legal custody is the doctrine that serves as the basis of parental rights and responsibilities. It is the purest form of child custody from a legal standpoint since they are rights afforded to all parents regardless of arrangement type.
Legal custody gives you the authority to participate and make decisions based on education matters, medical care, and religious issues. In short, every parent has legal custody, whether or not they have sole or joint custody.
2. Physical Custody
Physical custody is a designation reserved for parents who provide care and support to the child daily. Also known as residential custody, it is a form of custody that describes with whom the child will live.
A physical custody arrangement can be awarded solely or jointly. We examine these two sub-arrangements in closer detail below.
3. Sole Custody
Sole custody is when the courts assign the responsibility and care over a child to a single parent. The parent with sole custody is sometimes referred to as the custodial parent, while the parent who has visitation rights is known as the non-custodial parent.
The sole custody arrangement is most common since it affords the non-custodial parent an opportunity to still visit with his or her children without interrupting the consistency of schooling and home life that children need to thrive.
4. Joint Custody
Sometimes called shared custody or shared parenting, joint custody is when the child’s full-time living arrangements are divided between parents using a method of percentage.
For instance, a court may award a joint custody agreement using a 50-50 split. However, the actual rate used varies according the what is in the best interests of the child.
Joint custody arrangements are more challenging in terms of a court ruling. There is a ton of consideration on behalf of the family court judge assigned to your case.
It’s possible that receiving joint custody might not even be on the table if he or she feels that it is not conducive to your child’s well-being.
Ultimately, your options for joint custody include working with your ex, making a request to the court, and hiring a child custody lawyer in Phoenix to help you make the best possible case. Elements that a judge may ponder may include your child’s cognitive abilities, parental work schedules, child support needs, education needs, and economic capacity of both parents to manage this arrangement successfully.
An agreement that values joint custody arrangements is applauded for their child-centric approach. However, opponents of them say that the child does not have adequate access to consistency, which does not work for every child or family type.
How a Phoenix Child Custody Lawyer Can Help
Providing for and protecting your children is a top priority as it should be. If you are concerned about child custody issues as a married or unmarried person, you have options.
Moreover, you have rights that deserve protection, as well. When you hire a licensed Arizona family law attorney, you are retaining peace-of-mind in knowing that you are affording you and your family the best possible chance of moving forward in life.
Discuss Your Options at an Initial Case Review with DeShon Laraye & Pullen PLC
At DeShon Laraye & Pullen PLC, we know how to navigate the complexities that surround child custody issues skillfully. You don’t have to face the court or your ex alone in court. Contact one of our child custody lawyers in Phoenix for an initial case review. You can schedule a meeting with our team by calling (602) 461-7818 or sending us a message via our online request form.