While a divorce case is pending in Massachusetts, a judge may issue temporary child custody orders. These orders last only until the final divorce and custody hearing, at which time the judge will hear evidence and issue the permanent custody orders that will govern the child's residence, visitation and the parents' responsibility for decision-making.
As is the case in other states, there are two types of child custody arrangements that a Massachusetts court could order when parents end their marriage. The types are legal and physical custody, and such arrangements might be ordered as part of a divorce settlement that is accepted by the court or through a litigated divorce.
Earlier this month we wrote a blog post about legal issues that could arise when a parent who shares custody of a child with the other parent decides to relocate. In that post we discussed what generally needs to happen with the custody agreement before a parent can make the move. For example, a relocation considered to be significant, such as moving to another country, would need to be approved by the court. The failure to secure that approval could lead to legal problems for the parent who took the child. A woman from the east coast is currently facing that reality.
Sharing custody of a child can be a significant challenge for parents across Massachusetts. Unlike other family legal issues, child custody arrangements are ongoing and may need to go through some adjustments over time.
Fall is almost here, and school is back in session for many parts of the country. This time of year brings challenges, particularly in the first few weeks as children and parents alike must deal with changes like getting up earlier, settling back into a bedtime routine, packing school lunches and juggling homework time with after-school activities like sports and clubs.
Making the decision to divorce is never easy. Sharing this news with your spouse can be even more difficult. There are steps that can be taken to help ease the process.
Divorce is a very difficult time in anyone's life. Regardless of who initiated the proceeding, it is easy to get caught up in a battle of who gets more money in the settlement, especially if there is some animosity tied to the split. Whatever fuels this fight for cash, it is wise to keep the big picture in mind when going through a divorce.
Parents who have struggled with a mental or physical disability can face discrimination in child custody hearings. Unfortunately, a judge making a determination in a child custody case for this parent may decide the diagnosis is enough to rule the parent as unfit.
A divorce can be an emotional ordeal. Couples that have gone through this process may want nothing more than to avoid prolonged contact with each other. Yet when children are involved, a joint child custody arrangement may defeat that wish.