It’s not unusual for divorcing parents to disagree about what is in their children’s best interest. By retaining a dedicated child custody attorney, however, you can make sure that your voice is heard in court when it comes to establishing or enforcing a child custody order. We are careful to take into account children’s sensitivity to the conflict and stress that often accompanies a divorce, and we strive to keep your legal issues from negatively impacting your relationship with them. At Dillman, Chastain, Byrd, LLC, we promise to do everything in our legal power to protect the rights of you and your children when establishing child custody orders.
Sole Legal Custody
In the state of Indiana, custody can be awarded either solely or jointly. A parent that has sole legal custody of their child is responsible for making important decisions about the child’s life, including where they go to school, where they obtain health care and what kind of religious instruction they will receive. The non-custodial parent usually has visitation rights unless domestic abuse and/or neglect becomes an issue; under such circumstances these rights can be severely restricted by the court.
Joint Legal Custody
When a court awards joint legal custody, on the other hand, both parents are expected to come to a consensus regarding their child’s upbringing in matters of education, religion and so on. Even under joint legal custody, however, one parent tends to have primary physical custody of the child where their residency is concerned.
Joint Legal and Physical Custody
A third possibility is that a court grants joint legal and physical custody. Under this scenario, both parents not only have a say about their child’s upbringing but also divide the time the child spends with each of them equally. Courts usually only award joint legal and physical custody if the parents are living near each other and are willing to communicate for the sake of the child.
Let’s Get to Work
We can explain the different types of legal custody in the state of Indiana to you in more detail during your initial consultation. Additionally, if your living situation — or that of the other parent involved — has changed and you are seeking a modification of an existing child custody order, we can help you do so while continuing to safeguard the best interests of your child.