Troy Father’s Rights Lawyer
Divorce and custody cases are emotionally charged and complex. Parents often worry about how their custody agreement will impact their parental rights. When it comes to constructing a custody agreement, courts view both parents as equals.
Fathers have the same rights to custody as mothers do, and parents’ rights supersede those of any non-parents. If you are a father engaged in a custody dispute, you will need the help of a Troy father’s rights lawyer. A qualified family attorney may be your best option of protecting your custody rights.
What is Custody?
Custody refers to two separate concepts: where the child(ren) will live and who will make decisions on their behalf regarding important matters. If the child spends most of their time with one parent, that parent will have physical custody. Parents may share physical custody or a noncustodial parent may have visitation with their children.
Legal custody is different and refers to the right to decide major issues related to the children’s lives. For instance, a parent with legal custody can decide which doctor to take them to and which school they will attend. Parents can share decision-making duties and courts will often favor such an arrangement.
Parents may share both forms of custody, just one form, or courts might award both forms to the same parent. Fathers have the same rights to physical and legal custody as mothers do. A Troy paternal rights lawyer may help evaluate custody options based on the specific facts of a case.
Custody Decisions and the Best Interests of the Children
When it comes to deciding custody, the most important factor will be in the child(ren)’s best interests. Courts will view the needs and wants of parents as less influential than those of the children. If only one parent is able to offer a stable, safe, supportive environment, then the courts will favor an arrangement where the child spends more time with that parent, regardless of the parent’s gender.
The child(ren)’s best interests does not necessarily mean that they will be able to decide where they live. Children who are at least twelve (12) years old will sometimes be able to weigh in on their custody arrangements, while a judge will give little weight to the opinion of a five-year-old. Local father’s rights attorneys can counsel fathers on the factors that courts often consider in relation to the best interests standard.
The Role of the Attorney for the Child
Courts sometimes appoint an attorney for the child (AFC) who can help resolve custody issues. The AFC should be working on behalf of the children and not for either parent. Part of the AFC’s job will be to conduct an investigation of a family so that they can make informed judgments about the child(ren) and parents.
While AFCs are tasked with advocating for the child’s wishes, they can often weigh in on what they believe is an appropriate custodial situation and a judge will often adhere to their recommendations in these matters. AFCs yield a lot of power in custody cases, and working with them can be challenging and intimidating for parents.
When a judge appoints an AFC, a father should involve his attorney in any interactions with that person.
Schedule a Consultation with a Troy Father’s Rights Attorney
Custody arrangements will impact families for many years. Fathers will want to ensure that the agreement allows them to play a major role in the life of their child(ren). If you are divorcing your spouse or attempting to resolve custody with a former partner, you are likely under a lot of stress. A Troy father’s rights lawyer may help you develop a strong strategy for a favorable custody decision, and alleviate some of your anxieties over the pending case. Give us a call today.