Legal Custody & Physical CustodyFour Decades of Experience Guiding Clients Through Legal Matters
Legal Vs. Physical Custody
Raleigh Child Custody Lawyer
When two people have decided that a permanent severance must halt their marriage, they will have to decide on some crucial choices. As hard as divorce is, the decisions which are the most challenging have to do with any children that the former spouses share. Deciding on the parenting responsibilities is always a hard choice to make, and can become especially contentious if either party refuses to negotiate terms with child custody.
Of course, no parent wants to give up time spent with their child, so conflict might mean that the issue must be settled in court. However, it is important to know the distinctions between the two primary forms of custody, legal and physical custody, so that you can be prepared. Trust our Raleigh child custody attorney at Hopper Law Office to answer all your questions.
The term “physical custody” is used to talk about the physical location that your child or children will be staying at regularly. Physical custody might be granted to just one parent but could also be shared by both parents. It is important to remember that they are seeking the best interests of their children, so deciding where they live and how often they will travel is an important decision to make.
When you have been given legal custody by the court, this means that you are taking great responsibility to care for your children by making choices about the most crucial aspects of their lives. Some of these aspects include their education, their involvement in society and extracurricular activities, their health, their moral and religious upbringing, and any need for psychological counseling or academic tutoring.
When you and your partner were married, you most likely made all these kinds of decisions together. Even though you are now divorced, judges usually desire for parents to continue making such joint decisions so that children have the input of both parents. Therefore, the default circumstance is that legal custody is given to both parents, designated by the term “joint legal custody.” One parent might still be able to be the primary caregiver, but the two can work together to determine the practical logistics of carrying out the needs of their children.
Sole Legal Custody
There are certain cases where a judge may grant sole legal custody, even though this is not the default scenario.
The exceptions where sole custody might be granted include:
- When one parent lives a great distance away
- When a parent has a background of being abusive or neglectful
- When a parent has decided they cannot be involved in the child’s daily life and is unable to or does not desire to spend time with the child
Representation of Your Family in Challenging Times
Divorce is difficult for parents, but even more challenging for children. Here at Hopper Law Office, we want to care for children’s best interests no matter what. We can work with you to represent you powerfully in court, whether in granting legal or physical custody, or both.
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“They were very easy to work with, answered all of my questions, and made me feel at ease during a stressful time.”- Past Client
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“Thanks to Kevin Hopper, the kids and I are finally moving past the nightmare and learning to laugh again.”- Newton
“They were able to help me receive the outcome I needed and I would recommend them to everyone.”- Holly