Joint vs Sole Physical Child Custody

Child custody is often a big problem in a divorce, even when the parents come to an agreement on their own with the help of divorce lawyers outlining the terms so that it will be approved by the court. According to the website of Marshall & Taylor PLLC, child custody is often a contentious issue, so an amicable agreement would be the best for everyone. Most states encourage joint legal child custody, which means that both parents have equal rights to make major decisions concerning their minor children, but are amenable to awarding physical custody to one parent and visitation rights (typically 4 days a month) to the other parent.

However, it is believed that joint physical custody may be in the best interest of the child. Studies show that children who alternate weeks with parents in states that encourage joint physical custody adjust better to their change in situation, and experience fewer social, behavioral and academic problems than those who are in the sole physical custody of one parent. As pointed out in the website of Law Offices of Baden V. Mansfield, divorce does not mean the end of a parent-child relationship. Even to this day, mothers more often get sole physical custody of a child, especially if the child is very young, so the child grows up in a fatherless environment. Even if the mother remarries, the child will often benefit more from regular exposure to the father.

All US states will allow joint physical custody of a child if the parents petition for it, so those who are considering divorce should make every effort to continue to have a significant presence in their child’s life. In many cases this can be inconvenient due to geographical considerations i.e. one parent has moved to another state but it is worth considering when drawing up the child custody agreement.

If you are anxious to minimize the negative impact of divorce on your child, you may want to consider joint physical custody in your divorce agreement. Consult with a divorce lawyer in the state to find out how this can be done.

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