There are two categories of child custody: legal custody and physical custody. Legal custody refers to the right of a parent to make decisions regarding the child's health, education, and general welfare. In most cases, the parents share in the right to make these decisions and therefore share joint legal custody. Physical custody refers to the amount of time the child is physically with each parent. Custody schedules can vary significantly depending on the particular circumstances of each case. When one parent has more than a 50% timeshare with the child, he or she is considered to have primary physical custody and the other parent is deemed to have visitation.
When ruling on child custody and visitation issues, the Court will determine what is in the best interest of the child. The Court will consider many factors including the age of the child, the schedule that the child is already used to, the parents' work schedules, the distance between the parents' homes, childcare availability, the level of cooperation between the parents, and many other factors. The outcome of any particular case is highly dependent on the circumstances specific to that family.
The Law Office of Deborah A. Perkins can help you navigate this complex area of the law, always working toward what is best for your child.