Have you made the decision to end your marriage?
Going through a divorce is draining for everyone involved. Despite that, you’ll need to make tough decisions without getting emotional. That includes cooperating with your former spouse to arrange a parenting plan.
Keep reading to learn everything you need to know before coming to a parenting agreement.
What’s Best For Your Child?
What’s the number one factor Maryland courtrooms look at when making custody decisions? They look at the “best interest” of the child. Each aspect of a custody case gets judged on this standard.
Here are the types of factors a judge will consider:
- Who the primary caregiver is to the child
- The age and physical health of the child and both parents
- Each parent’s fitness to have custody
- The child’s preferences
What if the other parent hires the best family law attorney Maryland has to offer? Will you lose custody of your child?
Respectable lawyers will adhere to this “best interest” standard. In most circumstances, removing custody from one parent is only used as a last resort.
Parenting Plan Basics: Types of Custody
There are several types of parenting plans, so you need to know about them all before deciding which is best. Here are the main types of custody agreements:
- Legal custody: the parent who can make legal decisions on the child’s behalf
- Physical custody: the parent who the child primarily resides with
- Sole custody: one parent has physical and legal custody
- Joint custody: both parents share legal and physical custody
If you’re going through a high-conflict custody battle, then you need representation. Seek out a divorce lawyer that also specializes in child custody cases for the best results.
What About Child Support?
You also need to consider how child support will work with your parenting plan. If one parent has sole custody, then the other will enter into a child support order.
Joint custody arrangements often call for less support.
If one spouse is withholding a child for support, then that’s one sign you need a lawyer. The most respectable divorce attorney Maryland has to offer would agree.
Is Shared Parenting Always Best?
Many experts suggest that shared custody is always best. Divorce lawyers will confirm that there are several exceptions to this rule. Here are a few circumstances that may warrant a different arrangement:
- Any history of abuse or neglect from either parent
- The child’s preferences
- The distance between the parent’s homes and child’s school
- Other family relationships
- Special needs children that need consistent supervision
Are you feeling pushed into agreeing to a shared parenting plan when it’s not what’s best? A divorce lawyer in MD can help you determine what your best options are.
Reaching an Agreement
Your parenting plan must consider the needs of your child and both parents. As a mother or father, it’s natural to want what’s best for your youngster.
In most cases, that means a fair and long-term compromise between parents even after a divorce.
Are you struggling with creating a plan during the overwhelming divorce process? You’re not alone. Reach out to our law firm at (301) 539-9740 for more information about how we can help.