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Types of Custody

Types of Child Custody in Florida

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In the state of Florida, and indeed all around the country, child custody will first be determined based upon what is in the best interests of the child. While children might not have a direct say in and out of family law and divorce court, they can heavily influence how a judge rules based on their behavior and special needs. Each parent also can tip the scales either way depending on their own lifestyles, financial stability, criminal history, and more.

Due to the complexities that can arise in any child custody case, and all of the varying factors that must be assessed when figuring out how to make a child most comfortable, there is more than just one type of child custody. If you are going through a divorce, you should allow our Jacksonville child custody attorneys at Hutchinson Law examine your case. With our experience and guidance, we can point you in the right direction that will bring you to an amicable solution that does not forget your rights as a parent.

Tell us about your situation by filling out an online case evaluation form today.

Making Sense of Child Custody Agreements

It is understandable for both parents to want to be able to spend plenty of time with their children and make major life decisions for them. After a divorce, this can become a precarious process that leads to heated arguments. Child custody agreements are meant to resolve disagreements before they ever happen by defining who does what through a court order ahead of time.

There are four aspects or forms of child custody that could come up in your divorce:

  1. Physical custody: If you are awarded physical custody, your child may live with you on your property. It also means you have earned visitation rights on holidays or special events.
  2. Legal custody: Decisions regarding a child's education, religion, health care, and other important factors in their life and upbringing can be decided by a parent who has won legal custody of the child.
  3. Sole custody: Sometimes called primary custody, sole custody permits one parent and just that one parent custody of the child. This is usually reserved for cases involving an abusive or otherwise dangerous parent.
  4. Joint custody: Both parents are given custody, usually in shares as equal as can be. Joint custody encourages parents to work together, strengthening their post-divorce relationship and also their relationships with their children.

Physical and legal custody will be combined with either sole or joint custody in an agreement. For example, if you are granted sole physical custody but joint legal custody, your child will only live with you but both you and your ex-spouse have a say in how they are raised. In another opposite example, the court can decide joint physical custody but sole legal custody, allowing the child to spend half their time living with you and the other half with your ex, but only one of you gets to make the final call on important decisions.

Modifying Child Custody Agreements

As with child support and alimony payments, child custody agreements are not exactly permanent. Situations can change for you, your child, or your ex-spouse that require modifications to be made.

Reasons you might have to modify child custody include:

  • Chronic illness or debilitating injury
  • Unexpected job loss
  • Mandatory relocation for employment
  • Sudden financial hardship or boon

This will need to be brought to the attention of the court in most circumstances, and they have to be significant. You cannot simply state that you no longer want to live with your child anymore. Usually you may make temporary changes to visitation rules during the holidays without the intervention of the court, so long as you and your ex are both clear on the expectations.

Secure Strong Advocacy for Your Custody Case

With decades of experience, our Jacksonville divorce attorneys are ready to serve and represent you. By working closely with you and really getting to know your living situation, we can determine which type of child custody is the most fair and the most beneficial. We do not want you to feel forced into any decision, however, so we do our best to keep in close contact with you from start to finish. Call (904) 638-3134 today to get started. The wellbeing and comfort of you and your child should not be delayed any further.

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