This is how the court determines custody.
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First, I want to stress that it’s always better if the parties can
determine for themselves what is best for their children; as the parents,
you should know better than anyone what is in their best interests and
what things are important in their lives. I highly encourage you to try
to come up with something that works best for you and your family before
involving the courts.
In the event that you’re unable to reach an agreement, the court
will look at what’s likely to be in the children’s best interests—and
yes, that’s just as broad as it sounds. They’ll factor in
where the children go to school, what sporting events or extracurricular
activities they’re involved in, and how far apart the parties would
be living from each other.
The court’s goal is to encourage frequent and continuous contact
with both parties.
The court will try to come up with some form of an agreement that works
for both parties, and as you can tell already, nobody knows what that
agreement will be; when you go into court, you do so blindly. So, again,
since you won’t know what the court will order, it’s important
that you first try your hardest to find a solution outside of court.
"Try to come up with something that works best
for you and your family before involving the courts."
Before appearing in court, you’ll be directed to participate in what
we call mediation, a preliminary attempt to come up with the custodial
schedule that works best for you and your family.
In mediation, you will have a say as to what will happen to your children,
so there are no surprises there.
Typically, we see an array of custodial agreements and, naturally, what
works for a 5-month-old baby may be vastly different than what works for
a 5-year-old. There’s no cookie-cutter arrangement, nor should there be.
I hope you found this video helpful. If you have further questions on this
or any other related subject, please feel free to reach out to me. I encourage
you to review our other topics on
our YouTube channel and
visit our website.