By its very nature divorce is often an emotionally-draining process. It is even more stressful when minor children are involved. Don’t complicate matters by trusting custody to just any Southeastern PA family lawyer. A successful outcome requires more than a professional in the greater Philadelphia and southeastern Pennsylvania area with a J.D. behind his or her name.
This process has significant implications for you and your child. Trust the outcome to a family lawyer with more than five decades of specialized expertise. Combined with drafting and passing the Pennsylvania Divorce Code, Jack A. Rounick’s depth of experience has equipped him to help you navigate the twists and turns of the court system, and to dispel any misconceptions that may exist regarding child custody and support.
Every person is entitled to custody by law. This is the legal right to “care, control, guard, and keep” a minor. In the Commonwealth, a minor is defined as any child younger than 18 years of age.
In addition to physical custody, legal custody allows for a parent or parents to make major life decisions on behalf of the minor child. These decisions may have to do with the child’s medical treatment, religious practices, and educational decisions. Typically, legal custody is shared unless one parent is severely impaired in his or her ability to make such major decisions.
There are various approaches to physical custody. Physical custody is defined as the physical possession and control of a child. Primary physical custody is the right of a parent to assume physical custody for the majority of the time. Sole physical custody is the right of one individual to exclusive physical custody of the child, while shared physical custody is the right of more than one individual to assume physical custody of the child with each having significant periods of physical custody of the child, including a division of days, nights, holidays and vacations.
The guidance of a lawyer is generally advised even when a divorce is considered “amicable. “Each parent should have his or her own lawyer. This way, you and your child have protection under the law, and the expertise of a lawyer to help to ensure all decisions are made in the best interests of the child.
The “best interests” standard doesn’t mean any one consideration, but several. The court considers factors such as each party’s parenting actions, stable home life, personal safety, the party’s willingness to encourage a relationship with the other parent involved in the suit, the means to care for the child, and each party’s ability to foster the growth and development of the child.
The Law Offices of Jack A. Rounick will walk you through these and other considerations, answer questions, and address concerns you may have specific to your unique case. Call 484-684-6055 to schedule a consultation.