One of the greatest challenges that any couple can face when their marriage is dissolving is determining who will have custody of the child. One of the fundamental principles followed throughout the country is that the court will always look for the best interest of the child. It is important to know what this principle entail and how will affect a child’s custody after a divorce.

The Standard

The courts will focus on the “best interest of the child” standard and this means that a judge will look into custody based on the need of the child. A judge considers that a child’s wellbeing and happiness comes into top priority and can even come to exclude any other request given to the court by the parents. A judge will consider who the child wants to live with and who can provide to better the child’s living conditions without interfering with his or her physical, mental, emotional health.

Custody

There are several concerns that may arise when parents are determining who will have custody of their child. One of the biggest questions that arise are usually who will have physical custody, in other words, where will the child live and with whom. There are also issues regarding the legal custody of the child, and this entails is who will make the important decisions in the child’s life. Finally, questions arise in parenting time and how will visitation rights be arranged.

The way the courts decide is by establishing if there is a “sole” custody or a “joint” custody. In the former, only one parents gets to make the decisions in the child’s life while in the latter, both parents get to decide.