When it comes to divorce proceedings involving children, the most important factor the court is going to consider is the best interests of the child. While the parents certainly have the right to have their voices heard, the court system is always going to place the needs and interests of the child first. In some cases, the courts might decide to award one parent sole legal custody and sole physical custody. When it comes to issues surrounding sole child custody, there are a few important points that everyone should know.
What Is Sole Legal Custody?
If a parent is awarded sole legal custody, this means that only one parent has the right to make major decisions when it comes to the life of the child. Some of the biggest issues that the parent will get to make include:
- Decisions on how the child will be disciplined and brought up
- How the child is going to be educated
- Any medical decisions that might be required as part of that child’s healthcare
- How the child will be raised when it comes to religion
Of note, the other parent might still get to have his or her voice heard; however, he or she will not have any decision-making power. Those powers will go to one parent only.
What Is Sole Physical Custody?
While it is not unusual for one parent to be granted both sole legal and sole physical child custody, the two are different from one another. In sole physical custody, this is a child custody arrangement where the child physically resides at only one home. This is a big difference when compared to joint custody, where the child resides in two homes on a regular basis. In sole custody, the child does not have to move between home as part of a separation agreement.
It is important to note that the other parent may still visit the child; however, in most cases, this parent will have to come to the child’s home for visits. Even though this creates a more stable environment for the child, the other parent may feel more like a visitor.
The Differences Between Sole Legal and Sole Physical Custody
It needs to be understood that legal and physical custody are different. When a parent is awarded legal custody, this has nothing to do with where the child lives; however, it has everything to do with how the child lives and will be raised. It is common for one parent to have sole physical custody; however, the two parents have joint physical custody and have to agree on major life decisions for the child. These issues are complicated, which is why everyone needs the help of an experienced child custody lawyer.
Trust a Compassionate Child Custody Lawyer in Utah
Child custody issues are complex and should be handled by trained legal professionals. Attorney David Pedrazas brings more than 20 years of experience to the table for his clients. Recognized as one of the top divorce lawyers by multiple organizations, he will fight for the rights of his clients. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you!