Your Rights As A Parent
Resolving the puzzle of child custody is as important for unmarried parents as it is for divorcing parents. Sociologists tell us that more than 50% of babies are now born outside of marriage.
Whether you and your child’s other parent co-habit, co-parent while separated or are married and heading for divorce, you need to address the questions associated with child custody and visitation. Lund Law P.A. has been helping families find solutions for over 39 years.
Helpful Terms To Know
Increasingly, the term “child custody” is becoming an anachronism. In fact, in Minnesota family law courts, you will hear the term “parenting time” much more often.
The focus in parenting time matters is to translate to legal language in a court document how two parents living apart will share in the upbringing of a child or children. Legal terms for the resolution of your family’s reorganization will likely include:
- Joint physical custody (a very common solution, meaning that children regularly spend time in both parents’ homes)
- Joint legal custody (This involves decision-making authority over the child, and is frequently used)
- Sole physical custody (when a child or children live in only one parent’s home, though ideally spend time with the other parent)
- Sole legal custody (when one parent is unfit, and cannot or does not want to be responsible for making decisions such as where a child will go to school or whether the child will receive vaccinations)
Sole physical or legal custody may apply when one parent is completely out of the picture. More typically, family law courts in Minnesota tend to assume that joint physical and legal custody will be the starting point of negotiations.
How The Right Attorney Can Help
At Lund Law P.A., parents can expect honesty and an accelerated, focused education on legal ways of addressing questions of shared parenting such as:
- Different issues involved in the child custody equation at different ages (babyhood, toddler years, school-age years and teen years)
- Practical matters such as bedtime, discipline, homework and a daily or weekly schedule for a child or children
- Taking into account children’s extracurricular activities and friendships, and for teenagers, part-time jobs
- The impact of parenting time on child support
Setting aside and overcoming emotional aspects of shared parenting with an estranged partner is not easy for most people. Yet most parents are committed to doing what is right for their children. Family law courts call this “a child’s best interests.” It is the overriding consideration in a custody case.