Child custody is one of the most complex and difficult issues to address in a divorce. Whether you want to settle this matter through negotiations with the other parent or you believe that you will have to go court, it's beneficial to make sure you are fully informed and know about your rights and options. The final terms of your custody order will impact your family for years, and it's beneficial to proceed cautiously.
When considering your options regarding child custody, it's a good idea to think about what will work best long term. Your emotions and feelings are completely valid, but they are not necessarily the best indicators of what will be practical and sustainable. It is usually best to think about your kids' needs and interests above all else.
Which custody arrangement is right for you?
There is no one-size-fits-all solution to child custody. The right custody arrangement for you will depend on the needs of your family, how well you and the other parent work together, and more. There are also two different types of custody that will affect your post-divorce life and your parenting plan. They include:
- Legal custody – This gives you the right to make important decisions on behalf of your child.
- Physical custody – This is the amount of parenting time you will have, including visitation, vacation and more.
Children do best when allowed to maintain strong and consistent relationships with both parents after a divorce. For many families, this means that joint custody is often the most beneficial and practical option. Joint custody functions best when parents can cooperate and work together for the good of the children.
It is possible to resolve custody issues out of court. Discussions and negotiations can allow two opposing parties to come to a reasonable solution and avoid the cost and stress of litigation.
Your parental rights
If you are walking through a divorce, you may want to start with a complete evaluation of your case and a thorough explanation of your parental rights. This can help you move forward in pursuit of a custody and visitation plan that reflects both the interests of your kids and your right to equitable access to them.
Before you agree to a custody plan or make any choices that could impact your future, it can be beneficial to speak with an experienced Florida family law attorney about your concerns and legal objectives for your post-divorce life.