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What you need to understand about custody as a father

On Behalf of | Sep 17, 2018 | Firm News

As a father, you want what is best for your children. What is best for your children may seem clear to you, but when going through a divorce, you and your ex may disagree. Or the court might have a different opinion.

One thing that is clear is you want to remain in your children’s lives. You likely are wondering how custody is determined in Nebraska. Here is what you need to understand about custody, as you move forward with your divorce.

The difference between legal and physical custody

With child custody, there is physical and legal custody of your children. Physical custody is when your children live with you, and you have the right to make decisions on their day-to-day care. Physical custody decisions include things like what food your children will eat and what time they will go to bed. With legal custody, you have the right to make life decisions about your children. These types of decisions include health care, education and religion.

You can share part or all of custody

You can have joint physical and legal custody of your children. You could also be granted joint physical custody, but one parent could be given sole legal custody. The opposite could also be true. One parent can also be awarded sole physical and legal custody of children.

The court considers certain concerns when awarding custody

When considering custody issues, courts make their decisions based on the best interests of the children. Here are some factors the court may consider when deciding custody:

  • What the child would prefer, assuming he or she is old enough to make these decisions
  • The living environment of each parent
  • Physical and mental health of each parent
  • Previous relationship between the children and the parents
  • Any history of drug or alcohol abuse by either parent
  • Work schedules of each parent
  • Any history of child or domestic abuse by either parent

Fathers and mothers should have the same rights

Though fathers should have the same rights to custody as mothers, some courts still have a gender bias against fathers concerning custody issues. If you are concerned the court may favor your former wife in custody disputes, you may want to reach out to an attorney who has experience representing father’s rights during a divorce.