A Child Custody Lawyer in Allentown PA advocates for parents to get a fair custody arrangement. The lawyer often works with the client to negotiate a custody arrangement. However, there are times when parents go to court and let the judge decide custody. Judges make rulings based on the best interests of the child.
The Best Interests Determination
There are many factors used to decide the best interests of the child. For example, the judge looks at the parties’ parenting skills. A key skill is being able to provide necessities like clothing, food, and shelter. Further, a parent’s ability to nurture and guide the child is very important. Moreover, the judge considers whether the parents are in good physical and mental health. Indeed, many health issues affect the ability to care for a child.
Judges prefer that a child have a consistent routine. For instance, they make custody decisions that cause the least disruption in a child’s life. Preferably, the child gets to stay in the marital residence and attend the same school after the divorce.
Shared Custody Arrangements
The Child Custody Lawyer in Allentown PA explains custody options to clients. Indeed, judges prefer that couples finalize an agreement that works for all. The child normally lives with the parent who has physical custody. The non-custodial parent receives liberal visitation. However, more and more parents are choosing joint physical custody. This means the child lives with each parent for a period. This type of custody arrangement works best if the parents live near each other.
A parent with legal custody gets to make critical decisions about the child’s health, education, and religion. However, judges routinely grant joint legal custody to both parents. The parents must work together to decide on important issues. Unfortunately, some parents cannot work together for the good of their child. They often return to court to let the judge make key decisions.
Inevitably, there are instances where a parent has sole custody. Sole custody is granted to one parent when the other is unfit. This often happens when individuals are addicted to drugs or alcohol. Further, a parent will be denied custody if they are found to be abusive. To learn more, visit a lawyer’s website and click here for more information.