The birth of a child for most parents is a day of tremendous joy. Parenthood has both incredibly satisfying rewards as well as some very negative moments. Children who are caught up in custody litigation should be insulated from the battle. As an attorney who has been involved in child custody litigation for in excess of 35 years, I do everything in my power to keep the children away from the litigation and have both parents avoid lobbying the children or having the children act as a go between with regard to the parents.
Legal Representation in Child Custody and Visitation Situations
There are two different aspects of child custody. Legal custody consists of the ability to make decisions regarding the general welfare, health, education and other aspects of the children’s lives. Residential custody is where the children’s primary place of residence is.
There are a variety of different ways parents can amicably work out custody and visitation issues. One parent can have sole custody. Both parents can have joint custody. One parent can have physical custody and the other parent can have legal custody. Co-parenting arrangements, worked out by the parents out of court, are a better solution than having a judge, who does not really know the parents or the children, make long term decisions concerning custody issues.
The modern term for visitation with a child is referred to as parenting time. Parents theoretically are not visiting their child. They are parenting their child when the child spends time with them. The non-custodial parent of a child should have extensive, liberal visitation with the child or children. God has given each child two parents to love that child. The child should benefit from the love and nurturing received from both parents. This is true whether the parents are a heterosexual couple, or a same sex couple.