Law

Kinds of Child Custody and How they are Awarded

If you are fighting custody for your children, it is important to be sure of what you need. Thus, you must have knowledge about child custody before you indulge in the custody battle with your spouse. For this, you will need the services of an experienced Child Custody Attorney Wilmington NC. Keep reading to learn about the basics of child custody:

Kinds of Child Custody

Knowing the following types of child custody will help you determine what you need and decide your arguments:

  • Physical Custody. This type of custody means a parent can have children live with them. When awarded this custody, they become the custodial parent and they must take care of the children. If parents cannot decide who will have the child, the court decides for the best interest of the child. The court can award either joint physical custody or sole physical custody. Its decision depends on factors like criminal behavior, mental stability, child interest, and drug addiction.
  • Legal Custody. This means the awarded parent can make decisions about raising a child and major aspects of the child’s life. They can decide about the child’s education, religious upbringing, healthcare, and other aspects of life. In most cases, both parents are awarded joint legal custody. But, the court awards this custody only to one parent when the other is proven to be abusive, violent, and addicted to drugs.

How the Court Awards Child Custody

The court can award child custody in two ways:

  • Joint custody. This means that both parents have custodial rights. In most child custody cases, joint physical and joint legal custody is awarded to parents. Joint physical custody means the child can live with every parent according to the arrangement planned by the court. 
  • Sole custody. This means only a parent has custodial rights. Often, this is awarded to one parent as the other is deemed unfit. 
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