The breakup of married or unmarried parents can be difficult for everyone involved. Navigating a new arrangement where parents live apart can be highly charged emotionally. Bringing in an experienced attorney at an early stage can help prevent years of litigation and harm to the relationship of a child and his or her parents.
While in a rare instance, a parent may be awarded sole legal custody, it is almost always the case that the parents will have joint legal custody, in which case they will need to learn to co-parent effectively. Despite breaking up, they will be tied together until their child is emancipated. Often, long-term conflict can be avoided by the early involvement of a professional who can aid in the crafting of an agreement that will address the issues likely to arise between parents.
Physical custody is a more variable issue. There are many reasons why the amount of time a child spends with one parent or the other can change, and even when both parents are in agreement, a physical change can have ripple effects that parents may not spot. This can range from the need of a parent to relocate because of a job, or a child’s after-school activities expanding disproportionately into one parent’s time with the child. An experienced attorney can help navigate those situations as well as advocate for a client in cases of conflict over what is in the best interest of the child.