When you are getting a divorce, there are a lot of things that you are going to have to think about, even if your divorce is pretty amicable. One of the things that you are going to have to do is figure out what a child custody agreement is going to look like There are various kinds of custody options that are available to you. You may actually have various kinds put into place so that you have an agreement that works best for you and your soon-to-be ex.
Legal custody means that the parent has the right to make all of the legal decisions when it comes to their child. That includes things like what religion the child is raised in, as well as where they will go to school, medical decisions, and other similar things. This can be sole custody or joint custody. In most divorces, joint legal custody is the default, unless there is some specific reason that the court would decide that legal custody should be sole custody. If you have joint legal custody with your former spouse and you start shutting them out of those kinds of decisions, they could actually take you back to court because you aren't following your custody agreement. If you are sharing legal custody with your former spouse and there are problems, you should make sure that you talk to your lawyer so that you are doing everything by the book.
Physical custody refers to where your child actually lives. There are different ways that this could break down, outside of joint and sole. Mostly, the way that it breaks down depends on where the child lives the most. For example, if you have primary physical custody, that would mean that your child lives with you most of the time, and their other parent has visitation rights, and your child will generally stay at their home during a set period. If you have joint physical custody, but primary physical custody, then your custody/visitation schedule may break down to look like your child stays with their other parent every other weekend, Tuesday of that week, and Thursday of the week when they don't have a visitation week. You may also have strictly equal custody, in that your child spends one week at your house and the next week at their other parent's, or some other way that divides equally.
If you are getting a divorce and are trying to figure out child custody, knowing what your options are can help you make the right choice for you and your situation. Talk with a child custody attorney like one at Williams Law Group, LLC. about what would be best for your child.