Child Custody Basics – Rights, Residency, and Relationship

Child custody is a legal term used often by family courts to describe the rights and obligations of divorced parents and their minor children, the children’s residency or placement, and the relationship and/or amount of interaction the children have with each parent. When divorced parents are unable to reach an agreement on certain matters, the family courts are often tasked with deciding the best custody arrangement for the children and parenting plan for the parents. The more parents understand what goes into child custody determinations, the more educated they will be when making decisions about their children following a divorce.Do you want to learn more? Visit Fresno Family Law Attorney Association

Parental Rights and Obligations

Every parent’s rights and obligations to their minor children include decisions about the raising and general wellbeing of the children on issues such as education, medical care, dental care, and religion. Judicial custody of the children refers to certain rights and obligations.

Children’s residency or placement

Children’s residence or placement refers to where the children will live and spend the bulk of their time. A child will frequently live with one parent rather than the other, and the parent with whom the child lives the most will usually be responsible for the child’s day-to-day care. In certain cases, the child will live equally or nearly equally with both parents, or will spend considerable time with either parent, and the parents will share obligations and day-to-day care of the child. Physical custody of the children refers to the child’s residency or placement, as well as day-to-day care.

The children’s relationship with each parent and/or the amount of interaction they have with each parent

When a child lives or resides exclusively with one parent, the time spent with the other parent is often referred to as visitation. The parent who lives with the child the most is sometimes referred to as the custodial parent, while the parent who has visitation is referred to as the noncustodial parent. In such situations, the noncustodial parent will usually have a visiting schedule outlining his or her interaction with the baby. A parental plan is another term for the visiting schedule.