Understanding what happens to your children following a divorce or after a custody dispute is likely one of your most important and immediate questions. Typically, if the parties can agree on a custodial arrangement, then that arrangement will be honored. Otherwise, the court will look to the best interest of the minor child(ren). This requires the court to evaluate all relevant factors, including the wishes of the child’s parents, the child’s wishes, the child’s interaction and interrelationship with the child’s parents, siblings, and any other person who may affect the child’s interest, the child’s adjustment to the home, school, and community, and the mental and physical health of all persons involved.
After evidence is presented on these matters, the court will weigh the evidence as it applies to both parties. Custody orders can vary greatly and are made on a case-by-case basis, mostly depending on the specific circumstances of your situation. The court has the ability to decide whether joint custody (or shared parenting in Ohio) or sole custody is the best option. Shared Parenting involves a shared parenting plan agreement where both parties are deemed the residential parent and both have equal decision-making power over the child(ren) regarding school, medical, religion, and activities. Alternatively, sole custody means that one parent is making all major decisions regarding the child(ren) without having to consult the other parent.
Sometimes, toward the beginning of a custody dispute, a court will also issue an emergency custody order to provide as much stability for the child as possible. Emergency custody orders are usually reserved only when the child(ren)’s health, safety, and welfare is in immediate danger. The court may also modify custody orders if at any point it appears that things have changed to the point that a modification is in the best interest of the child(ren).
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At The Law Offices of Nicholas A. Kulik, we’ve spent years helping Cincinnati families navigate the court system. We know what evidence is most important for your case and how we can best help you to get custody of your child(ren). Contact us for a consultation today so that we can begin helping you with your specific situation.