Barbara J. Katzenberg, Attorney at Law
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Child custody options that fit your needs

The state of Massachusetts understands that, when going through a divorce with children involved, figuring out custody can be difficult. The state offers four different types of child custody arrangements so that parents can reach custody terms that are the right fit for their families. What are those four options?

Option number one is: sole legal custody. This type of custody gives one parent the right to make all important decisions for the children. Where the kids will go to school, what medical procedures they will have done, what religion they will practice -- it will all be up to one parent.

Option number two is: shared legal custody. This gives both parents equal say in how their children will be raised. For this type of custody arrangement to work, parents need to be able to communicate effectively.

Option number three is: sole physical custody. This is where the children will reside with one parent full-time. The other parent may be granted visitation rights.

Finally, option number four is: shared physical custody. This is where the children will spend time living with each parent. The exact number of days per year they will spend with each parent is open for negotiation.

The state of Massachusetts, like most states, prefers to grant shared custody. There are numerous studies that suggest doing so is best for everyone in the long run. Of course, it is not appropriate in every situation, thus the state offers the other options. Those who are preparing to divorce soon or in the future can turn to legal counsel to learn more about child custody options and what they need to do to fight for the custody plan they desire.

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