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Nassau County Joint Custody Lawyer

If you reside in Nassau county, or in the surrounding area, and are facing a legal matter involving child custody, you likely have a number of questions. For example, you may be interested in learning more about the essentials surrounding joint custody.

Overview of Joint Custody in New York

On some level, joint custody is a preferred arrangement when it comes to minor children in a divorce or paternity case. When joint custody is possible in a particular situation, both parents have the opportunity to be more closely involved in the life and affairs of a minor child. With that said, there are some specifics about joint custody that you need to understand when facing the prospect of a case involving custodial issues and your child.

When it comes to joint custody, there actually are two types of custody at issue. These are legal custody and physical custody.

Joint Legal Custody

Legal custody is the ability of a parent to make major life decisions for a minor child. These include decisions about issues involving matters like religion, education, and healthcare.

In a situation in which joint custody is awarded or agreed to in a case, both parents have the ability to make primary life decisions for a minor child. In a situation in which sole custody is ordered by the court, only one parent is granted authority to make major life decisions for a minor child.

Joint Physical Custody

Physical custody involves which parent provides a residence for a minor child. In the case of joint physical custody, both parents provide a residence for a child. There can be situations in which joint physical custody exists in a case, but one parent is designated as the primary residential custodian. In other words, although the parents share joint residential custody, but the child resides more often at the home of one of the parents.

Parenting Time or Visitation

Even when joint physical custody is awarded or agreed to in a case, there is a need for a parenting time or visitation schedule. A visitation schedule is needed particularly when one of the parents is a primary residential custody of a minor child. The parent that does not have primary residential custody, even in a joint residential custody arrangement, is entitled to have reasonable and regular parenting time or visitation.

The Standard for Establishing Child Custody

New York courts are required to use a specific standard when considering a child custody arrangement in a particular case. The standard used in New York focuses on what is in the best interests of a child.

In determining what is in the best interests of a child, a court considers a number of factors. These include factors like which parent historically been the primary caretaker of a child. Other factors include the residential situation of each parent as well as the overall physical, emotional, and mental health of the parties.

If you face a custody issue, you best protect your legal interests by retaining a Nassau county joint custody lawyer. The first step in retaining a Nassau county joint custody lawyer is scheduling an initial consultation. At an initial consultation, a lawyer provides an evaluation of your case. There typically is not charge for an initial consultation with a New York joint custody attorney about your case.