Child custody is the legal term for the parental relationship between a parent and their child. In the eyes of the law, children are not able to make decisions for themselves and therefore their parents or guardians must do so on their behalf. This includes decisions about where the child will live, what kind of medical care they will receive, and what kind of education they will receive. Child custody can be awarded to one parent or both parents and can be either joint or sole custody. However, when couples separate, all of these issues may become contentious. When a child’s custody and upbringing are in dispute, the child custody laws and the court becomes involved.
When parents are divorced or separated, they must go through the process of determining child custody arrangements. This can be done through mediation, negotiation, or in some cases, litigation. In most cases, parents should agree on child custody arrangements, as this can help reduce conflict and make the transition easier for the children. If parents are unable to agree on a custody arrangement, the court will make a decision based on the best interests of the child.
What is a Child Custody Evaluation?
A child custody evaluation is a process through which a mental health professional evaluates the fitness of each parent to care for their children. The child custody evaluator will interview the parents, children, and other important people in the child’s life, and observe the interactions between the parents and children.
The evaluator will also review any relevant documents, such as police reports, medical records, and school records. The purpose of the evaluation is to provide the court with information that will help them decide on child custody.
Types of Child Custody
There are many types of child custody arrangements that can be made between parents. Some arrangements are more traditional, while others are more creative. The most important thing is to find an arrangement that works best for your family. There are four main forms of child custody: legal, physical, joint, and sole custody.
Physical custody refers to where the child will live. In some cases, the child may live with one parent full-time and visit the other parent on weekends or during holidays. This arrangement is known as sole physical custody. In other cases, the child may spend equal time living with each parent. This arrangement is known as joint physical custody.
- Joint physical custody means that the child lives with both parents equally. This can be done in several ways, such as alternating weeks or months between households. Joint legal custody means that both parents have a say in decisions about the child’s welfare.
- Sole physical custody means that the child lives with one parent most of the time. The other parent may have visitation rights. Sole legal custody means that only one parent has the right to make decisions about the child’s welfare.
Legal custody refers to which parent has the authority to make decisions about the child’s upbringing. These decisions can include education, medical care, and religious upbringing. In some cases, one parent may have sole legal custody of the child. This means that only that parent can make decisions about the child’s upbringing. In other cases, the parents may have joint legal custody of the child. This means that both parents must agree on major decisions about the child’s upbringing.
Several hybrid arrangements can be made, such as shared physical custody with sole legal custody, or vice versa. The important thing is to find an arrangement that works best for your family.
A judge will consider a variety of factors when making a child custody determination. The judge may also consider any history of abuse or neglect by either parent.
If you are going through a divorce or paternity dispute, it is important to speak with an experienced family law attorney to understand your rights and options. An attorney can help you navigate the child custody process and advocate for your rights as a parent.
How Family Violence Affects Custody
The court needs to know if there has been any violence in your home. A judge must make the safety of the child and the abused parent the primary focus of the custody decision and must consider violence against the parent when deciding custody. Watching violence against the parent can harm a child as much as abuse the child.
What do Courts Consider When Making Child Custody Decisions?
The court will consider a variety of factors when making child custody decisions, including the following:
- The child’s age
- The child’s sex
- The child’s health
- The child’s relationship with each parent
- The distance between the homes of the child and each parent
- Each parent’s work schedule
- Each parent’s ability to care for the child
- Each parent’s mental and physical health
- Each parent’s drug and alcohol use
- Each parent’s criminal history, if any
- Any domestic violence or abuse by either parent
Can You Get Child Custody If You Have a Criminal Record?
If you have a criminal record, you may be wondering if you will still be able to get child custody. The answer to this question depends on several factors, including the severity of your criminal record and whether or not you have been rehabilitated.
A conviction for a serious crime, such as murder or rape, will almost certainly result in the convicted parent losing custody of their child. A conviction for a less serious crime, such as drug possession or driving under the influence (DUI), may also impact custody if the court feels that the parent’s criminal behavior puts the child at risk.
If you have a serious criminal record, it is unlikely that you will be able to get child custody. This is because the court will likely view you as a danger to your child. However, if you have a less serious criminal record and you have been rehabilitated, the court may be more willing to grant you child custody.
In making its decision, the court will consider several factors, including the severity of your criminal record, the nature of your crimes, and whether or not you have been rehabilitated. The court will also consider the best interests of the child, which means that it will take into account factors such as the child’s relationship with each parent and the child’s safety.
What Felony Crimes Will Prevent the Custody of a Child?
When it comes to child custody, a felony conviction can be a major obstacle. In many cases, a parent with a felony conviction will be barred from having any custody or visitation rights.
However, there are some exceptions to this rule. If a parent has been convicted of a violent crime, such as murder or assault, they will most likely be denied custody rights. Similarly, if a parent has been convicted of child abuse or neglect, they will also be ineligible for custody. Other felonies that may result in the loss of child custody include drug-related offenses, sex crimes, and crimes involving domestic violence.
In some states, even a misdemeanor conviction can lead to the loss of child custody rights. If you have a felony conviction on your record, it is important to speak with an experienced family law attorney to understand your rights and options. An attorney can help you navigate the child custody process and advocate for your rights as a parent.
Will Expunged Convictions Help a Child Custody Case?
An expunged conviction is a criminal conviction that has been removed from a person’s record. In some cases, an expunged conviction may help a parent’s child custody case.
If you have an expunged conviction, the court may still consider the offense when making a child custody determination. However, the court will likely give more weight to evidence of your rehabilitation and good character since the crime occurred.
It is important to note that even if your conviction has been expunged, the court may still have access to your criminal record. For this reason, it is important to be honest with your attorney about your criminal history so they can fully prepare your case. If you are seeking custody of your child, don’t let a criminal conviction stand in your way.