Experienced Child Custody Lawyers in New Bern, NC
Custody is broken into two parts – “legal” custody and “physical” custody. Be sure to ask your child custody lawyer to explain this in detail.
- Legal custody includes the decision-making power over the minor child. This includes making major medical, education and religious decisions for the child. The courts tend to grant joint legal custody to parents, giving equal decision-making power to both parents and encouraging co-parenting, if feasible.
- Physical custody addresses which parent is exercising physical care, custody, and control of the minor child. If your goal is to get physical custody, please express this to your child custody attorney. Except in extraordinary circumstances, it is both healthy and desirable for the child to have regular contact with both parents.
Joint custody means that both parents are fit and proper to exercise physical custody of the child, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that the parents will have equal amounts of time with the child. They may share equal custody or one may be the primary custodian while the other parent is granted visitation.
- Joint custody can be very beneficial, especially when parents are able to work together in the child’s best interests. Your child custody lawyer will help you articulate what is in the best interest of your child.
Types of visitation
Visitation comes in two forms – “reasonable visitation” or “structured visitation.
- If a non-custodial parent is granted reasonable visitation, visitation will not be detailed but rather subject to the agreement between the parents. It provides more flexibility, but also requires a working, amicable relationship between the parents.
- Structured visitation involves a schedule for child visitation. Visitation may be structured in a variety of ways including, but not limited to, every other weekend, alternating holidays or several weeks during the summer.
Until there is a custody order in place, both parents have equal rights regarding their child. To prevent as much disruption in the child’s life as possible, it is important to be proactive with regard to child custody, especially if the parents’ relationship is contentious. When a judge is forced to make a custody determination, it is already clear that the parents are incapable of working together to resolve the matters concerning their child. During a child custody trial, the judge considers certain facts and issues to determine what is in the children’s welfare and best interests. You want a child custody lawyer on your side.
At GreeneWilson, our family law attorneys are committed to giving you effective, professional representation.
With more than 50 years of combined experience, we’re ready to guide you through any family law issues that may arise, including: