A divorce can be a difficult time for children. Aside from the regular stresses and fears that they may possess at their age, a child in Ohio may worry about who will care for them when their household is suddenly split into two. Courts that handle custody cases prioritize the best interests of the children whose lives are affected by separation and divorce, and one of the most important things that they must decide is how the children’s physical custody will be managed.
Physical custody concerns where a child will live and which parent will be responsible for their day-to-day needs. Courts can assign one parent physical custody of a child. In such cases, the non-custodial parent may be able to secure visitation time with the child. If it is appropriate, a court may allow parents to share physical custody of the child.
Many factors can be weighed when a court must decide where a child will live after the separation or divorce of the parents. However, in the end the court must determine what custodial arrangement will serve the child’s best interests and implement that plan in the lives of the relevant family members.
If a parent loses physical custody of their child they should know that they may still retain legal custody. Although legal custody does not grant a parent the right to have their child live with them, it does allow the parent to stay active in the decision-making processes about the child’s upbringing.
Physical custody is an important issue that parents should carefully consider when they plan to divorce or separate. They may wish to consult with family law attorneys to attempt to ensure that their plans meet their children’s needs and serve their interests.