Defining Child Custody in Albany
After a divorce, it is important to determine where a child will live and who will be primarily responsible for their wellbeing. There are several different factors that define child custody in Albany, which every parent should be aware of. If you are finding the task overwhelming to manage, consider retaining the services of a trustworthy child custody attorney. They could take the time to explain how each type of arrangement will impact you.
How is Child Custody Defined?
Child custody is largely divided into legal custody and physical custody. Legal custody is broadly defined as the custodian having decision-making authority for the child, including medical decisions, religious decisions, and educational decisions. Physical custody refers to where the child is primarily living. There are further designations that define the child custody relationship in Albany, such as joint legal custody, sole legal custody, and modified joint legal custody.
What is the Purpose of Child Custody?
Generally, the purpose of child custody is to look out for the best interests of the child. That can include maintaining their lifestyle, keeping things consistent, and setting expectations for parents. If there was a disagreement between divorced parents, and there was no custodial arrangement to settle the matter, then the child could be the one who ends up hurting the most. Having a child custody agreement takes much of the uncertainty or conflict out of the equation and allows for a more durable experience for the minor.
The Role of Custodial and Noncustodial Parents
The custodial parent is the person who has primary physical custody of the child or children. Their responsibilities are those of any parents who have primary responsibility for the physical well-being of the child – the only difference is they have custody for the majority of the time as opposed to their former partner.
A noncustodial parent is merely the parent who does not have primary physical custody. It can mean a number of different things, depending on what the schedule for parenting time is, and where they live. Generally speaking, the noncustodial parent has a schedule for parenting time, where they are permitted and expected to spend time with their child.
A noncustodial parent could still have joint legal custody with the custodial parent to guide the child’s upbringing. When they have joint legal custody, their responsibilities as parents are to discuss the important decisions as they pertain to how their child will be raised.
Important Things to Know About Child Custody
In local child custody negotiations, it can be difficult to define what is considered a successful agreement. However, New York operates as under the “best interests of the child” doctrine. This means the court will give preference to an arrangement that will allow the child to thrive, as opposed to an arrangement that is in the self-interest of one parent or the other.
Parents can enter into their own contract outside of court as well. However, if they want to have a child custody order that is enforceable by law, a court judge must approve it. It is recommended that they have an enforceable contract so as to avoid any major conflicts that might have negative consequences for the child.
Speak with an Attorney About How Child Custody is Defined in Albany
The role of a custodial parent and a noncustodial parent can be drastically different, even if they both get to spend time with the children after a divorce. It is crucial to understand how each role is defined in Albany child custody cases so that you can secure the best framework for your family moving forward. Contact us now and speak to someone who could provide more information about what you should do next.