What Type of Child Custody is Right for My Family?

Picture of child playing with puppy in grass

If the popular saying that half of all marriages end in divorce is accurate, many parents may be left wondering which type of child custody is right for their family. This is a confusing and difficult decision to make on your own. It is important to take advantage of resources, such as a free consultation with a local Dallas family lawyer. They will be able to discuss the four types of child custody with you and determine what is best for your situation.

What are the Four Types of Child Custody?

  • Physical custody. This means that a parent has the right to have their child physically with them. Sometimes, physical custody will be awarded to both parents if the child spends a substantial amount of time with each parent.
  • Legal custody. This is when the parent has the right to make decisions regarding the child’s upbringing. Mainly, any significant decision regarding a child’s life will fall under legal custody. Legal custody can be awarded to both parents, but if one parent feels that working together will be an impossible task, they can ask for sole custody.
  • Sole custody. This can be sole physical or legal custody. Most courts hope to have both parents involved in a child’s life, due to the vital influence a parent has. However, if one parent is unfit to care for a child, sole custody will be awarded to the other parent.
  • Joint custody. Like sole custody, shared custody can involve physical and/or legal forms. A downside is the child may not have a strong sense of stability. The constant change can be draining. On the other hand, keeping in mind again that both parents are an important part of a child’s upbringing, it may work wonderfully for a family.