September 16, 2012

The Best Free Legal Advice on Child Custody

By Jacob Adam Martin -

One of the hardest issues to resolve in a divorce settlement is child custody. Both parents would wish to earn the court’s favor, so the child could grow up with him or her. However, this is a daunting task, especially if you are not familiar with the best legal tips to consider concerning earning the favor of the court. Fortunately, some lawyers are kind enough to share legal advice pertaining to this matter.

Important Child Custody Considerations

    1. Child Custody Attorney

      There are many types of attorney offering their services to the public. However, you need to choose a child custody attorney if you wish to gain higher chances of earning winning the case. These lawyers are more knowledgeable of the best techniques, approaches, and child legal advice that can be used for the court to grant custody to you rather than the other party.


    1. Diligence is Key

      Your child custody attorney can only be great in court if you will feed him with the necessary information. Be an active participant of the case. Get yourself involve. Do the necessary research and perform the steps he recommends to thoroughly prepare you during the child custody hearing. Your credibility in the eyes of the jury will have a great impact on the case results. You have to show them you are more than capable of rearing the children. If this is successful, then you can relax at your chair while waiting for the jury to reveal their decision.


    1. Practice Self-Control

      It is possible for you to learn infidelity cases from the other party. It may trigger you to lose control resulting to actions that may aggravate the case against you. The other party may be researching of evidences to disprove your capacity to become a responsible parent. If you allow them to use this sudden loss of temper as ground against your capability as a parent, then you are most likely to rest on the losing end. Therefore, the best child legal advice is to keep your calm and always think with reason.


    1. Knowledge of State Laws

      Every state has its own rule associated with child custody. While waiting for your lawyer to prepare the best defense in favor of your request, you may browse several free legal advice child custody for your state. Read as much information about child custody tolerated in your area. Use this as a guide to easily earn the favor of the court. Keep it in mind and you will soon embrace your children for good underneath the same house.


  1. The Power of Inquiry

    Be pro-active. Inquire about legal terms that sound unfamiliar to you. If wish to share new information to your lawyer, then feel free to approach him or her about these. You may be victim of domestic violence and use it to discredit the claim of the other party for custodianship. Prepare the necessary documents and witnesses that will help prove this claim. Discuss this matter with your child custody lawyer and develop a powerful plan that will secure the victory of your case.

Knowledge is key in defending your child custody in court. However, free legal advice child custody from the best lawyers in your State will help you succeed easier. If you do not have sufficient money to pay for a private lawyer, then you are always free to contact Legal Aid from your State for assistance. You may also refer to free legal clinics for the best legal advice that can be used for your case.

Fight for your rights! Be informed and win the child custody case so you can grow old together with your children.

Jacob Adam Martin is an employee at Avvo ( ), a free online question-answer website for consumers to find a doctor or lawyer. Avvo’s lawyers answers a question every 10 seconds. So what are you waiting for, ask your legal question for free at and get professional legal advice.

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Is Family Law Biased Towards Women?

By Andrew Marshall -

We often hear stories of men who claim that divorce settlement and child custody arrangements are biased towards women. Is this generally true though, or is it a false perception amongst those who have seen cases go against them? This partly depends on how this subject is viewed. It is more common for men to pay maintenance towards women than the other way round and Mothers have primary custody of children more often than Fathers. The reason for this is not that the system is biased but because circumstances are more often such that this is necessary or more convenient.

When a woman “wins” a divorce case or child custody it is usually for a good reason. Men, on average, work more hours than women with the majority of stay-at-home parents being Mothers. This means that post-separation she may be in a better position to have primary custody of their children purely from a practical point of view. In terms of both child maintenance and spousal support, the fact that men earn more than women means they more often pay this. Where it is the other way round it is usually the woman who pays support.

There are many cases of women giving up work after having children or cutting down the hours they work, therefore limiting the opportunities of career progression. Where this is the case the entire family is usually mainly financially supported by her partner. Most of the time it is deemed that after a separation this should, to some extent at least, continue.

Family trends are changing to some degree. There are more stay-at-home Dad’s than ever before and more women are high-earners. Looking at the population as a whole though, men still work and earn more and women staying at home to look after children is more common. The slightly changing trends have seen a rise in the number of Fathers having primary custody of children and women having to pay support.

Some arguing that family law is biased towards women point to some of the data regarding the high number of men paying maintenance to former partners and the high proportion of women who have child custody. In the majority of cases, though, this is not decided through the family law courts, but between former couples themselves. The majority of child custody cases do not go to court. More often than not parents decide between them that children should primarily live with their Mother with men deciding it makes sense due to their work commitments. This means the majority of children live with their Mothers post-separation but not because family law is in their favour but because a former couple decide between them that it is the best option. Decisions regarding finances are more often decided through the legal process.

There are two key reasons for women more often being supported by men after a separation and for women more often having primary custody of children. When decisions are made through the legal system women are not “favoured” because they are women but because of the circumstances. They tend to be lower earners so receive spousal support and are often in a better practical position to look after children. The other important thing to remember is that decisions are often made between former couples rather than through the courts.

Andrew Marshall

For more information regarding legal issues around separation visit Family Law.

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How to Change Child Custody Schedules When There Are No Signed Arrangements

By Evan Lebough -

Child custody is the source of great frustration for a lot of divorced couples or those who were never married, and the frustration is not always limited to the non-custodial parent. Custodial parents may be upset with the heavier burden placed upon them, especially if they do not feel they are receiving adequate child support. But most often, the non-custodial parent is unhappy with the custodial arrangement. The non-custodial parent may take his or her concerns to the custodial parent and request they work with them to allow them to receive more time with the child.

A lot of custodial parents are receptive to the proposed changes, as long as they are fair. Common requests include allowing them to see the children for an extended period over the summer or around the winter holidays, and a request for an extra day during the week on which they may see the child. The arrangement may work great on both sides for a while, but if circumstances change and the custodial parent or the non-custodial parent is unable to continue the verbal custody arrangement, the absence of a court order outlining the new arrangement may prevent the complaining parent from keeping the plan from reverting to the original order.

That is why it is so important to go through the proper channels whenever you wish to change a child custody arrangement, or the terms of any agreement that are outlined in a court order. Without this proper legal documentation, you may be left helpless if the other party wishes to cancel your verbal arrangement in favor of the old court ordered arrangement. It may seem cold to go through the proper legal channels to obtain the court order, and you may feel like it is counter-productive to do so after you and your ex-spouse work hard to trust each other post-divorce.

But even if you feel that you can trust your ex-spouse and believe that there is no reason that a new verbal arrangement cannot work out for both sides, protecting yourself by going through the proper legal channels and obtaining a modification to a court order is important. That said, and pertinent to the question posed in the title, if you wish to change the schedule when a signed arrangement is not in place, you still must go through the courts to ensure that the new schedule is enforceable and legally binding. Doing so is beneficial to both sides and can actually prevent future skirmishes when the schedule is laid out so clearly.

For parents who are disputing child custody and visitation, it is advisable to get in touch with an experienced and professional Child Custody Lawyer to get the outcome you are entitled to as a parent. Click this site for starting the process.

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5 Facts About Divorce and Child Custody

By Rocky C Rhodes -

Divorce is a trying time for anyone, but few suffer more than children caught in the middle of a marital dispute. You would do anything for your child, and you can not bear to be away from him or her. If you are in the middle of a divorce, you may be apprehensive about your former spouse requesting full custody of your children. Here are five facts about divorce and child custody that can help ease the already massive strain by allowing you to understand the custody process.

1. Best Interest

In any custody dispute, divorce courts use a legal standard that places priority on the “best interest” of the child, based on a judge’s subjective summation of each parent’s health, emotional state, and ability to provide care, guidance and resources. In cases where one parent is not clearly favored over the other, the court will decide based on each parent’s ability to provide a stable environment. In the case of very young children, this might mean giving custody to the child’s primary caregiver. In older children, it can mean the parent who is best able to provide educational, communal, and religious resources to the child.

2. Multiple Custody Options

“Joint” or partial custody is one of the most frequently awarded types of custody by divorce courts. Joint custody can take several different forms. For instance joint physical custody means that the child spends significant time with each parent. Legal custody means that parents share responsibilities in making major decisions in the child’s life, such as choosing medical treatments, deciding on the best educational opportunity for the child, and decisions regarding the child’s religious affiliation. Parents who are willing and able to work with each other to share custody frequently arrange a custody arrangement that serves all parties’ best interests.

3. No Preference Between Mothers and Fathers

In the past, most state divorce courts had in place a “tender years” requirement that meant custody of a child under the age of five would be awarded to the mother. This has since been rejected in nearly every state. Now, the courts will examine the fitness of both parents before making a decision. There is a gender stereotype that women in general have more time and a greater inclination to properly care for the child, but fathers who seek custody should not let this stand in their way.

4. Visitation: Reasonable and Fair

Even if a parent does not hold physical or legal custody of the child, the parent can often gain visitation rights to see their child in a manner that is ‘reasonable’ and ‘fair’. Generally, the parent who holds custody is free to determine what is reasonable or fair, so it is in both parents best interests to cooperate and make sure the child has sufficient time with each parent.

5. Parenting Plans Can Help

Divorce is hard, but you might be able to minimize the impact to your child, and minimize your own stress by having a detailed plan for custody and visitation. Understand that no matter what happened between you and your former spouse, your child should come first. Cooperate to create a detailed parenting plan to minimize disputes and ensure custody and visitation is fair to all parties involved.

Need more information about navigating custody disputes? Click here to have all of your family law questions answered!

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Child Custody Evaluation

By Jean Mahserjian -

A child custody evaluation can be ordered by a court if you are involved in a custody dispute with your spouse. The custody evaluation can be required in an initial custody case or in a subsequent case if one of the parents requests that the issue of custody be modified. If you are seeking primary custody of your child, you’ll want to know the guidelines for the child custody evaluation that you will have to undergo. To some extent, these guidelines vary from state to state, so you will need to discuss the child custody evalutaion process with your attorney or your state family court.

In general, a child custody evaluation involves a series of meetings between the parents and children and a professional who will assess the custody issue. Sometimes that professional is a psychologist. Sometimes it is a professional with an Masters and sometimes a Doctorate degree. In some states the professional simply investigates and reports the details of the investigation to the court. In other states, the professional doing the child custody evaluation actually gives the court a recommendation as to how custody should be determined.

The manner in which a child custody evaluation is used by a court can also vary from state to state. In some states, the judges put a higher priority on the wishes of the children and that issue is addressed in the custody evaluation. In some of those states, the child’s wishes are considered if the child has attained a certain age. InIllinois, the child’s wishes is a key factor. In other states, it is only one factor or not a factor at all. In Alabama, a chid’s desire is not considered as a reliable factor in determininig custody, so the factors to be given priority over the child’s wishes in the child custody evaluation are more focused on the well being an safety of the child.

A child custody evaluation can involve an investigation into moral habits and issues such as alcohol or drug use, church affiliation and family support system. Other issues that can and often are reviewed in a custody evaluation include factors that are unrelated to moral habits, but which are more focused on the determining which parent can satisfy the child’s needs, include the ability to provide an appropriate home, school support, and so forth.

A child custody evaluation can take months to conclude. The investigation aspects can include a review of any existing counseling records for the family, either or both parents, or the children, any mental health records for any of those parties, any criminal records, school records for the children, and one or more interviews with each parent and child and any other individual that the court deems appropriate. For example, if a companion or significant other is living with a parent, that person could have an impact on the day to day lives of the children. The court may want that person included in the child custody evaluation. Some of the evaluation interviews are conducted individually, and some are conducted with parent and children together. That format is dictated by the professional conducting the custody evaluation.

If you are involved in a custody dispute and you will be involved in a child custody evaluation, speak with your attorney about the process that you and your children will be subjected to. Be prepared and open and provide all of the information that is requested of you. Most of all, find out what you are able to say to the children to prepare them for the interviews that they will have to attend.

Attorney Jean Mahserjian is the author of numerous websites and books devoted to helping consumers through the process of separation and divorce. To download free excerpts from her family law books, visit: Divorce and Child Custody

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The Court Determines Child Custody

By David Chandler -

A child custody proceeding is any case involving child protection, adoption, guardianship, termination of parental rights or voluntary placement of your child.

The support order will be based on the child’s needs, obligor’s ability to pay, custody arrangements and the child support guidelines. The Criminal Code makes it an offence to abduct a child to spite a custody order. A custody order establishes both the custody and parenting time arrangement for the children. Your child custody order is also confidential.

When an unmarried mother has a child, the mother has legal custody of that child until a court says otherwise.

During divorce, marriage, or annulment proceedings, the issue of child custody often becomes a matter for the court to determine. The Court must consider the following factors in every child custody decision under the law regarding the best interest of the child. The court retains the power to alter the custody arrangements until the child turns 18 or is emancipated.

You may contest custody, child support, and alimony and property division by appearing in court and filing appropriate legal papers. At the hearing, the court shall hear evidence to determine whether the child custody and support determination should be modified. The fact that one parent has been the child’s primary caretaker is often considered but is not enough to guarantee a custody award. It is not that unusual for middle class parents to spend $60,000 on a divorce and child custody fight. Traditionally, divorce in the United States results in one parent being awarded primary custody and decision making for a child.


Each parent shares the rights and responsibility for the care, custody, companionship, and support of their children. Some states, such as Arizona, have fathers rights groups specifically dedicated to helping fathers obtain custody of their children ( for example).


Custody means that a parent has legal custodial rights and responsibilities toward the child.

Joint child custody means that both parents have the legal custodial rights and responsibilities toward a child. Joint custody allows both parents to have a say in the child’s upbringing. There is no evidence to support that a presumption of joint custody is in the best interests of children. A study found that only when parents were still actively fighting did joint custody exacerbate children’s feelings of being torn between parents. However, when both parents favor joint custody, it can be a good solution for the children. Some parents have chosen a joint-custody arrangement in which the child spends an approximately equal amount of time with both parents. Some states award joint custody in which the judge simply divides the child’s time between the parents. Joint custody does not mean simply alternating where the child lives from time to time. In fact, there may be legal joint custody, but the child may live with only one parent.

Legal child custody includes the right to make decisions about the child’s education, religion, health care, and other important concerns. A child may be placed in foster care while a custody case is pending. Legal custody means the right to determine the child’s upbringing, including education, health care, and religious training.

Physical custody and residence means the routine daily care and control and where the child lives. Physical child custody is awarded to one parent with whom the child will live most of the time. In most cases, both parents continue to share legal child custody but one parent gains physical child custody. There is also a presumption that it is in the child’s best interest to be in the custody of a parent over a non-parent.

Visitation rights allow the non-custodial parent (the person without child custody) time to spend with their child. A common arrangement is that one parent gets custody of the child and the other parent is given visitation rights.


A child custody evaluation is a report written by a neutral professional about you, the other parent, and your children. It is usually not necessary that formal psychological tests be administered to each parent in the context of a child-custody evaluation. The primary purpose and focus of the custody and/or visitation evaluation is to determine what is in the best interests of the child. Comprehensive child custody evaluations generally require an evaluation of all parents/guardians and children, as well as observations of interactions between them. The children are also evaluated in a custody/visitation evaluation.


Because of the complexity of child custody matters and the importance of the outcome, it may be advisable to contact an attorney. The attorney should know several child custody evaluators or guardian ad litems that they have worked with successfully. If you proceed with a child custody action without an attorney, you are acting as your own attorney.

In a child custody dispute, there are rarely winners, frequently everyone is a loser, and the biggest losers are often the children. When women fear losing custody of children the stress can be overwhelming. However, in many cases, women are favored as holding custody of their children.

For more information about child custody, visit Child Custody

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Bugging and Tape Recording Conversations in Arizona: Is it Legal?

By Trent Wilcox -

Lawyers often receive inquiries about the legalities of recording phone or other conversations in Arizona. In particular, the issue frequently arises in family law cases where child custody is at issue. Related to the recording issue is the “bugging” issue.

There are a number of variables that affect the answer to the central question, whether it is legal to either record or even bug conversations. First, bugging and recording are two different issues under Arizona law, often related, but also potentially very different under the law. Second, the laws regarding bugging and recording vary significantly by jurisdiction so what is legal in one state may be illegal in another. As well, the federal law may vary from state laws.

The following is a very brief analysis of the bugging and recording law in Arizona:

A. Bugging, otherwise known as wiretapping, typically means placing a device on a phone that allows one to eavesdrop on a conversation or other transmission. Bugging by a private party is considered illegal almost all of the time for two reasons primarily: First, it allows someone to listen to a private conversation between two or more unsuspecting parties. Second, bugs are usually placed without permission so you have a number of infractions inherent in such trespass-like activity. If you suspect someone has placed a bug on your phone or other device, you should call the police.

B. In the case of a telephone or in-person conversation, recording simply means making a copy of the conversation between two or more people. Recording is illegal in Arizona if NO party to the conversation knows that the conversation is being recorded. However, in Arizona, and this varies by state, if one party to the conversation knows that the conversation is being recorded, it is not illegal. Thus, if someone tape records a phone call or conversation involving him/herself and another person, even one who is unaware of being recorded, that’s legal in Arizona. If the same person taps into a phone line and records a conversation between two people who are unaware they are being recorded, it is ILLEGAL. Arizona and federal law are similar in this respect; however, recording conversations is illegal in certain other states unless all parties know of the recording and consent. There may be some cross-jurisdictional issues involved when tape recording a conversation across state or national boundaries. Prior to tape recording, I recommend that you consult an attorney in the appropriate jurisdiction.

In summary, bugging/wiretapping is always illegal while tape recording is legal in Arizona as long as one party to the conversation is aware the conversation is being recorded. However, don’t make assumptions about the law in other states -consult an attorney to determine what is allowed.

Wilcox & Wilcox, P.C.

Trent Wilcox

For the Firm

Phoenix office:

3030 N. Central Ave., Ste. 705

Phoenix, Arizona 85012

Ph: 602-631-9555

Fx: 602-631-4004

Goodyear office:

1616 N. Litchfield Rd., Ste. 240

Goodyear, Arizona 85338

Ph: 623-344-7880

Fx: 602-631-4004

Visit our website:

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Disclaimer: Providing the above information does not establish an attorney-client relationship. To create such a relationship, both the attorney and potential client must sign a written fee agreement. The information contained herein is meant only as general information and is not meant to be relied upon for the purpose of taking legal action. You should contact an attorney in person for further and specific information. Wilcox & Wilcox, P.C. attorneys are licensed in Arizona only except for personal injury attorney Robert N. Edwards, who is licensed in Arizona and Minnesota. Information in this article may apply only to Arizona.

Attorney Trent R. Wilcox is the managing partner of Wilcox & Wilcox, P.C. Mr. Wilcox practices in the areas of family law, employment disputes and general civil litigation. Mr. Wilcox is admitted to practice in the Arizona state court and federal district court and is a member of the Maricopa County, Arizona State and American Bar Associations.

Mr. Wilcox has worked closely with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children to return abducted children to the custodial parent. He has assisted parents in cases brought under The Hague Convention of 25 October 1980 on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction.

Mr. Wilcox plays golf professionally when time remains after family and the demands of the law office have been met and currently carries a +3.9 handicap.

Article Source:–Is-it-Legal?&id=18097

Child Custody Laws for Single Parents

By Amie Haskett -

Child custody is a very emotional subject and even more so for single parents who are not married. Custody battles can become very nasty when the father does not accept paternity, when unmarried parents do not live together or when a relationship comes to an end.

Child Custody Laws

We will focus on custody laws relating to mothers and fathers who have never been married to each other, with children born out of wedlock. Divorced couples may also be known as single parents, but the same laws do not always apply. As laws differ from country to country we cover general principles only. In the United States each state has its own. If you live elsewhere in the world, do an internet search for child custody laws applying to single parents.

The Rights of the Child

The basic principle remains the same for all child custody laws. The rights of the child come first. The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child specifies that in all legal matters, countries should act in the best interests of the child. Children of single parents have the same rights as children born in wedlock.

Children’s basic rights include:

  • The right to life
  • The right to a name and nationality
  • The right to be cared for by his or her parents
  • The right to have contact with both parents

The Rights of Single Parents

Child custody describes the legal relationship between a parent and child. This relationship involves both rights and responsibilities. Rights regarding custody for single parents could include:

  • both biological parents have automatic custody rights
  • the unmarried mother has automatic custody
  • the unmarried mother has to apply for custody
  • the unmarried father has to prove paternity before applying for custody even if his name appears on the birth certificate

Types of Child Custody

Most family courts support the idea of joint custody as children benefit from a strong and close relationship with both parents. Depending on the circumstances, different types of custody can be awarded to single parents

  • sole legal custody – one parent makes all the decisions
  • shared legal custody – both parents make the decisions
  • sole physical custody – the child lives with one parent, with the other having either unsupervised or supervised visitation rights
  • joint physical custody – the child spends more or less the same amount of time with each parent.

If the biological single parents are too young, or not considered fit to care for the child, the courts may award custody to a third party, such as a grandparent.

Evaluation tools for awarding custody

Courts do not use a fixed list of rules when awarding custody to single parents. A judge may consider the following factors or situations:

  • age of the child
  • best interests of the child
  • child’s preference
  • relationship between child and each parent
  • primary caregiver to date and impact on the child of any change
  • ability of the parent to provide a comfortable, stable and caring home
  • relationship between parents
  • parents’ preference
  • evidence of alcohol or drug abuse by either parent

Find out the custody laws for your state or country. Even if you are in a good relationship with the father or mother of your child, unmarried single parents living together should formalize all child custody issues.

For more information regarding single parents, visit us at

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Child Custody – Things the Judge Will Consider

By Lucille Uttermohlen -

Whether you are getting a divorce, or were never married, the court has guidelines it must follow in awarding custody of a child. In general, it is the court’s duty to place the child where it would be in his/her “best interest” to live. The following are some of the things a judge would normally consider.

The age and sex of the child can be important. If a boy is old enough to decide that he wants to spend more time with his dad, the judge may let him move in. If a girl feels that her step-mother is … well, not the good witch, a court may listen to what she has to say in favor of her mother’s home. The child must be old enough, and sufficiently mature to understand what he/she is requesting. If the judge thinks he/she is, serious attention can be paid to the child’s wishes.

The persons sharing the custodial parent’s home can be relevant to a custody modification. If the mother’s boyfriend is abusive, or the father’s new wife is hostile to his kids, the court may decide that the child would be better off with the other parent. If the child is mistaking needed discipline for cruelty, however, the court may decide that his/her stability is best served by remaining with the custodial parent, even if that parent won’t let the child blast his music at full volume whenever he/she wants.

If there are other children, the court may look at whether the child would suffer by being separated from his/her siblings. Even half siblings can form strong bonds, and it may not be good for the child to live in the other parent’s home if to do so would cause them to be apart. This factor can be neutralized by the existence of half siblings in both homes. Still, the child’s relationship with these other children can be important.

Drugs and alcohol can also play a part in a custody determination. Obviously, a parent who drinks to excess or engages in the use of recreational drugs may lack the judgment to provide a safe home for the child. The risk of dangerous behavior or even being jailed could make this kind of parent a bad choice for a child’s primary caretaker. In addition, if the parent is violent, or can’t protect the child from others who are, the child may be better off in the other parent’s home.

The things a judge uses to determine where a child should be placed, also depend on the situation. Most judges don’t like to talk to small children because they are unable to appreciate the significance of the proceeding. However, an older child may be able to provide useful information regarding his/her own best placement. School records can also be useful in assessing a child’s home situation. A straight “a” student who is suddenly flunking may be in need of the other parent’s care. If the child is getting therapy, the counselor’s opinion may be valuable. Finally, the court can ask for reports from independent persons, such as guardian ad litems, if the judge is convinced that the parties and their witnesses cannot give adequate information on which to base a fair decision.

Copyright (c) 2009 Lucille Uttermohlen

Lucille Uttermohlen has been a family law attorney for 27 years. If you hav questions about divorce, or any other legal issue, visit Lucille at for answers.

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Issues of Child Custody

By Sharon L Tate -

The parent who is granted physical custody of the children will live with the children and provide for all the children’s daily needs. That parent is responsible for basic needs, such as food, clothing, and transportation. The parent who is granted legal custody is given the responsibility to make all the major decisions that will significantly impact the child’s life. These decisions involve issues of education, health, religion, or any other significant matter. When deciding issues of child custody, the parents must decide who will have physical custody and who will have legal custody. Of course, one parent may be granted sole custody, in which case he or she would have total custody of the children. Another arrangement is called joint custody, in which the parents equally share both custodies (physical and legal) of the children or share either physical or legal. The parent who does not have physical custody of the children is granted visitation rights. Under the orders outline by the court, that parent is allowed to see the children under certain circumstances and in specified locations. The child may be allowed to spend weekends or overnights with the parent, but the child may not move in with the parent.

There are many different arrangements that are available to the parents, and if they cannot decide on their own, the court will step in and decide what is in the best interests of the children. Sometimes, when parents cannot come to a mutually satisfactory agreement, they hire a mediator-a neutral third party who helps to negotiate decisions. The mediator is not allowed to side with one parent or the other; on the contrary, the mediator is required to provide helpful information and guidelines for the parents so that they can come to the best possible solution. Mediation can be helpful when a decision must be made but the parents cannot agree together on what the appropriate outcome should be.

The parent who does not have custody of the children is often obliged to pay child support to the other parent. The resources from the child support are to be strictly used for the needs that are incurred with the raising of the children, and the custodial parent may not use the money or resources for any other reason. If you are a parent and are currently going through a divorce, it is essential that you find a trustworthy and experienced family law attorney. Developing a satisfactory parenting plan is important because it is tedious and sometimes fruitless to try to change it later on. The court is often reluctant to change divorce orders unless concrete evidence is given that the changes are in the best interests of the children. This can be hard to come up with, and if the court does not see the significance, no change will be allowed.

These same rules apply when parents are seeking a legal separation instead of a divorce. Many of the same decisions must be made regarding child custody. The only difference between legal separation and divorce is that after a legal separation, the couple is still legally married. Therefore, they must still choose which spouse will have custody of the children and which will have visitation rights.

The Law Office of Sharon L. Tate has a respectable reputation because Ms. Tate cares about each of her clients; her respectable reputation is well-earned, and it speaks for itself. She is a reliable and experienced family law attorney who serves clients in Phoenix, Arizona. She treats each client as an individual and cares about the outcome of each case. Ms. Tate has 14 years of experience in family law and is prepared to take on your case. She has experience both as a tutor and has edited documents for Law Review. She taught law classes at the college level and enjoys researching issues that involve law. She has a particular interest in family law cases and wants to help her clients pursue the outcome that is in their best interests.

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