When you have child custody and parenting issues in your divorce, you’ll hear the phrase, “best interests of the child.” What a judge believes to be in the best interests of the child basically determines the outcome of disagreements between the parents. For example, the court will consider whether and to what extend the new family lifestyle after a divorce enables the child to best adapt to the new changes in his or her life. The age of the child has the most significant impact on that, but there may be other factors to consider. The court wants you and your spouse to ease into your new family dynamic in order to make the transition easier on your child.
You and your spouse can best help your child through the divorce process when you maintain an amicable relationship. While that may not be easy at first, it is very beneficial in helping your child’s transition into their new way of life. Avoiding fights and contentious debates about visitation, child support, visitation and other child-rearing issues is ideal for your child. Always remember that you can disagree without being disagreeable!
When the court considers issues regarding custody and support, it will make the final determination of which parent will pay support and how much will be paid. There are certain factors that come into play when making this determination. The court first will look at the income of each parent in deciding what child support is payable. The court is guided by its Child Support Guidelines. You can find the Guidelines on the internet after a quick search. When there are other special circumstances regarding the child’s rearing, such as educational costs or unusual medical expenses, the court will consider those as well. The court doesn’t deviate from its Guidelines often, but your attorney can advise you of that.
Reaching a solution on which you and your spouse can agree can be facilitated by the skill of an experienced divorce and family law attorney. It takes both skill in negotiation and the completeness and accuracy of the information you share with your attorney for your needs and wishes to be realized in an amicable solution. Negotiating to a comprehensive and fair agreement is best for you, your children, and your pocketbook. Experienced attorneys manage divorce issues every day; you and your spouse usually have to confront such issues only once.
Call our law office if you have questions about the divorce process or any family law matter that may concern the best interests of your child.