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Understanding the different types of child custody

On Behalf of | Dec 2, 2021 | Parenting Plans And Parenting Time

Divorce impacts Nebraska families in different ways, and you may find that your decision to end your marriage will affect how often you see your kids. You want to maintain an active role in the life of your kids, and it is critical to establish a fair and sustainable custody order in order to accomplish this. The first step for you will be to gain a better understanding of the different types of child custody and how they could impact your relationship with your child.

There is no one-size-fits-all solution for child custody. The right type of child custody arrangement for your family depends on certain factors unique to your situation, including your schedule, the needs of your kids and where you are going to live post-divorce. By understanding the difference between legal and physical custody, you can pursue a final custody order that will provide stability and security for your kids long-term.

Legal versus physical custody

Legal custody refers to the right that a parent has to make important decisions in the life of his or her child. This includes decisions for education, religious upbringing, health care and more. Parents who share joint custody may share legal custody, but it is also appropriate in some cases for one parent to retain sole legal custody. Physical custody refers to the amount of time the child will be with his or her parent, including visitation, vacations and holidays.

Joint custody is a popular custody arrangement because it allows the child the opportunity to maintain relatively equitable relationships with both parents. In most cases, joint custody typically means parents will share legal and physical custody. However, there are situations in which one parent will retain sole physical custody while sharing legal custody or vice versa. It is also possible for parents to custom-tailor a custody arrangement best suited to the individual needs of their kids.

Creating the best future for your kids

The best future for your children depends on factors specific to you, the other parent and your kids. While it is normal to have strong feelings about the outcome of any custody decisions, you would be wise to set aside temporary feelings and focus on what will truly be best long-term. The goal of any custody decision is to provide your kids with the ability to have physical and emotional security long after the divorce is final.