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Vermont Child Custody

Posted by admin on 27th April 2006

Vermont child custody laws are set forth in the best interest of the children and if joint custody is feasible, but in order to give joint custody both parents must agree to the responsibilities and have the desire for joint custody. Before the courts in Vermont will consider joint custody they will consider the following factors:

* The relationship the children with have with both parents, and the capability of both parents to give their children the guidance, love and affection they need.

* The capability of each parent to give their children adequate clothing, food, medical care and other items they need in a safe environment.

* The capability of each parent to meet all the needs of their children in the present and in the future.

* The adjustment the children have in their school, community and home and what effect changing would have.

* If both parents can ensure a positive relationship with frequent and continuing contact with the other parent which includes physical contact unless the contact would endanger the children in any way.

* The relationship the children have with the primary caretaker, if the child is of sufficient age.

* The relationship the children have with anyone in the home.

* The capability of the parents to cooperate and communicate when making joint decisions regarding the rearing of their children and which rights and responsibilities are to be shared or divided.

* Any evidence of abuse and what this has done to the children, including the relationship the children have with this person.
The court will not choose one parent over the other because of the sex of the child or the parent or their financial resources.

If joint custody is feasible the parents must submit a parenting agreement to the court. The agreement must include provisions that state the following:

* Where the children will be living the majority of the time.

* The contact each parent will have with the children.

* The type of education the children will be receiving, such as private school, home schooling, etc.

* The health care, medical care and dental care that will be provided for the children.

* What type of travel arrangements will be used for the children to visit both parents.

* What type of procedures will be used between the parents when they are communicating on their children’s welfare.

* If the parental rights and responsibilities will be shared equally or divided and how they will be divided.

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Utah Child Custody

Posted by admin on 27th April 2006

Utah child custody laws allow the court to make the final decision for the future care and the custody of any minor children as the court believes is appropriate for the children. There are set factors that the court will look at when deciding which parent or type of custody is in the best interest of the children. These factors include:

* Whether joint custody or physical custody will benefit the children in their physical, psychological, development and emotional needs.

* The capabilities of the each parent to put their children’s welfare first and to make decisions together regarding their children.

* Can both or will both parents allow a relationship with the other parent and encourage this relationship including contact, love and affection that should be shared with both parents and their children.

* If both parents actively participated in rearing the children prior to the divorce.

* How close the parents live to each other.

* If the child is of sufficient age and is able to form an intelligent preference their wishes will be heard on whether they desire joint custody or physical custody.

* The willingness and capability of both parents to protect their children from any conflict that may arise when making decisions regarding the rearing of their children.

* The ability of both parents to cooperate and make decisions together.

* Any history of spousal abuse, child abuse or kidnapping.

* The moral standard and conduct of both parents.

* Which parent is more apt to allow the children a frequent and continued relationship and contact with the non-custodial parent.

* Any factors that may help in the best interest of the children.

Joint custody is the preferred type of custody when it can be accomplished. This way both the parents and the children can have a loving and stable relationship. The children also can cope better knowing that their parents are still there for them even though they are in separate homes. The continued contact will aid the child emotional and give him the love and affection from parents that he needs and deserves.

In cases of joint legal custody, there is usually a joint physical custody order put into place as well. This just means that the children will normally stay overnight with each parent more than 30 percent of the year. Both parents will also contribute financially to the rearing of the children. The court can decide that one parent will be the main caregiver even in joint legal custody cases and they may also order one home as the primary residence of the children.

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Texas Child Custody

Posted by admin on 27th April 2006

In Texas, child custody is not even called child custody they have their own terminology which is several different categories that they call “conservatorship”.

The three major types of conservatorship include:
Sole managing conservatorship is when normally the mother would be awarded custody of the minor children in a custody case. This entitles the custodial parent to manage all of the affairs of the children which include the selection of the children’s school, medical care providers, moral training, religious training, and where the child will live. This type of custody gives the parent ultimate control over the child.
Sole Possessory Conservatorship is normally what would be given to the father or the parent that has the children for the weekend. This will give the parent only some control over the affairs of their children. The major right that this type of custody gives to the parent is the right to visitation. With this type of custody none of the decisions made by the sole managing conservatorship can be changed.
Joint Managing Conservatorship is when both parents share the responsibilities and the continued relationship in their children’s lives. In Texas, this is considered to be the most appropriate and in the best interest of the children. Both parents together will decide on the affairs of their children and agree on such items as religious training, physician, counseling, and any other factors that may arise.

Even in cases of Joint Managing Conservatorship, the court will still need to award the primary possession. This is where the children will physically live. The court usually decides an exact area in which the children must live to continue to establish a relationship with both parents; normally they will limit any type of move within a county or even a certain school district. The idea is to maintain a certain amount of stability within the children’s lives.

Parent’s wishes to have Joint Managing Conservatorship can submit an agreement to the court with their best wishes for the care, custody, and where the children will physically live. The judge will read the agreement and may ask for a social study which a neutral person will make a home visit and evaluate the home environment and then submit their report to the court. The court will need to decide which parent should be able to provide a safe and stable environment for the children by all evidence that has been presented to the court.

The court may also order both parents into divorce counseling or some other type of classes if the judge believes that it would be beneficial for the children.

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Tennessee Child Custody

Posted by admin on 27th April 2006

Most states have adopted guidelines to aid them in making the proper decision in child custody cases that are in the best interest of the children involved, Tennessee is one of these states. The factors that the courts and judges consider are:

* The emotional ties, love and affection between the parents and the children.

* The willingness of each parent to provide their children with clothing, food, medical care, education and all necessary care.

* The main caregiver of the children.

* How long the children have lived in their present stable environment, except in cases of abuse where a parent has left because of such abuse. If the home environment was hostile and the parent left with the children then this was not a stable environment and will not weigh in the decision made by the court.

* How stable the family unit is.

* The physical and mental health of both parents.

* The adjustment of the children in their home, community and school.

* The wishes of the children if they are at least 12 years of age or older. The court may listen to younger children, but the older children’s preferences will weigh heavier than the younger ones.

* Evidence of emotional or physical abuse to any of the children, to one of the parents or to anyone living in the home. The court will review all evidence and determine accordingly for the safety and well being of the children involved. Any evidence of abuse to the children will be given to the juvenile court for further proceedings.

* The behavior and character of anyone that lives in the home or visits frequently that may interact with the children.

* The past performance of the parents to accept their responsibilities on rearing their children.

* The willingness of both parents to ensure a continued and loving relationship between both of them and their children.

* Any other evidence deemed important that would be in the best interest of the children.

The non-custodial parent does have rights under Tennessee law and they are as follows:

* The right to carry on a telephone conversation without any interruptions from the other parent at least twice a week and at reasonable times for reasonable amounts of time.

* The right to send to mail to their children without the custodial parent opening the mail and or censoring anything in the mail.

* The right to receive notification and information regarding any death, major illness or hospitalization within 24 hours of the fact.

* The right to any school records including, attendance records, names of teachers, copies of the children’s report cards, class schedules, tests scores and any other pertinent information.

* The right to any medical records.

The court may decide that some these rights are not feasible especially in cases of domestic violence.

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South Dakota Child Custody

Posted by admin on 27th April 2006

South Dakota does not have any specific factors set when it comes to child custody only that sole or joint child custody will be awarded by the discretion of the court on behalf of the best interest of the children involved in the child custody case.

Joint custody is what most of the states now desire in child custody cases, this gives both parents the same rights to rearing their children and to stay involved in all aspects of their children lives. This can be done if both parents are willing to set their differences aside and work together to ensure that they will both continue to have a loving and caring relationship with the children without any interference from the other parent.

The court will listen to and look at all evidence that is presented to ensure that the children’s best interest is at the root of any parenting plan and that neither parent has been threatened to agree with the plan.

Other factors the court will look at include:

* The wishes of the parents as to who has custody or if they desire joint custody.

* The wishes of the children if they are of sufficient age and intelligence.

* The relationship the children have with both parents, their siblings and others in the home.

* The home environment.

* The adjustment the children now have in their school, home and community.

* The physical and mental health of everyone in the home.

* Domestic abuse of any type.

* How close the parents live to one another especially in cases when joint custody is feasible.

* The main caretaker of the children.

* How much time each parent can actually spend with the children instead of seeking child care.

* Which parent is financial capable of rearing the children.

* No preference will be made concerning the sex of the parent as to which parent would be more suited in any child custody case.

As with all states, custody is not an award or a punishment, the court will under their own discretion decide what type of custody whether joint or sole, and what would be in the best interest of the children.

Even in cases of joint custody, one parent may still have to pay support to the other parent to aid in the rearing of their children. This will also be looked at by the court.

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South Carolina Child Custody

Posted by admin on 27th April 2006

In South Carolina, one statute kind of sums up the overall preference of the court and lawmakers when it comes to child custody and that statute is SECTION 20-7-100. Which are the rights and duties of parents in regard to their minor children.

It states that both parents are the joint natural guardians of the children and are equally obligated with the welfare and education of their children and also the care of the children and their belongings. Both parents have the same exact duties, rights and power. Both parents also have the right to access and obtain all medical records and educational records pertaining to their children and the right to be involved in any type of activity that their children are a part of. Neither parent shall by law take a child from the parent or guardian if they do not have the legal right to do so.

All of that is great, but that still does not answer the question as to which parent should and will be awarded custody of their minor children. The rule of thumb in the majority of the states today is that the parent will be chosen by what is in the best interest of the children involved in a child custody case. Many states today have set up guidelines to follow or at least some basic factors to look at when determining child custody. These are pretty simple and include:

* The wishes of the children if they are of sufficient age.

* The wishes of the parents.

* Which parent was the main caretaker of the children.

* Which parent will encourage and not hinder the relationship of the other parent with the children.

* The adjustment the children have in their home, community, and school.

* The physical and mental health of anyone in the home.

* The relationship the children have with both parents, their siblings and others living in the home.

* Domestic violence.

* Drug or alcohol dependency.

If both parents can agree and submit a parenting plan that will explain their goals for their children including such items as where the children will be living, how much time the children will be spending with each parent, how any disagreements will be resolved, if both parents will make the major decisions together, etc…, the a joint custody or shared custody agreement may be awarded. But, the factors above will also be looked at very closely.

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Rhode Island Child Custody

Posted by admin on 27th April 2006

In Rhode Island there are no set standards or guidelines to aid the courts and judges when making their decisions in child custody cases. The custody of the children is determined by what would be in the best interest of the children and that the non-custodial parent should have reasonable visitation as long as it is not detrimental to the children. There are also no certain terms for joint custody.

Even though there are no exact guidelines set for determining child custody, Rhode Island has several guidelines for the payment of child support and visitation by the natural parent and the grandparents.

Normally, most states will listen to all the evidence to ensure that the children are placed in the home that is in their best interest, many times without any type of statue or guidelines to follow the judge or jury will choose according to their own thoughts as to which parent would be best suited to rear their children. In most cases, even in states like Rhode Island that do not have any set guidelines they will hear all information and evidence so they can make an intelligent decision when it comes to child custody.

Many times, the court will listen to the wishes of the parents, and if the children are old enough they will also listen to their wishes. This may be done in the judge’s chamber instead of in the courtroom. They will also look at how the children interact with both parents, and anyone else living in the home, including their siblings. How well adjusted the children are in their school and community can also play a part as to who will be awarded custody. The physical and mental health of parents, the children and others in the home can also affect the awarding of child custody. If one parent was the main caretaker while the other one was at work, this can be a major factor especially with younger children. Any information that can aid the judge in deciding which parent or home would be best for the children can be submitted to the court.

Any type of domestic violence is a major factor when it comes to child custody. If either parent has been convicted of domestic abuse or if there is proof of domestic abuse, the court will look closely at this evidence because abuse in the home is not in the best interest of the children.

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Pennsylvania Child Custody

Posted by admin on 27th April 2006

In Pennsylvania, like many other states, the child custody laws have guidelines for the courts and judges to ensure that custody is given in the best interest of the children and that continued contact will still exist between both parents and the children when it is possible. The law in Pennsylvania does not give an exact definition as to the meaning of in the child’s best interest but the guidelines set forth should aid them in awarding the suitable parent to be awarded custody or if joint custody is feasible. The factors that are used include:

* The fitness and character of the both parents.

* The home environment of both parents.

* The relationship each parents has with the children.

* The parenting skills of each parent.

* The capability of each parent to care for their children, physically, intellectually, and emotionally.

Instead of choosing the mother like the courts use to do in Pennsylvania, the custody of the children is being given more often to the main caretaker of the younger children. Many times, this is still the mother, because normally the father works outside the home and the mother cares for the younger children.

Grandparents also have rights in the decision in child custody manners. Grandparents have the right to petition the court to awarded visitation with their grandchildren and even custody is some cases. But, there must not be any type of problems between the parents and the grandchildren in order for this to happen. The court does not wish to interfere with the relationship that the parent has with their children.

In Pennsylvania, joint or shared custody is preferred by the courts and is usually found to be in the best interest of the children unless there is evidence of domestic abuse in the home. This type of custody gives the children the comfort they need and the assurance that both parents love them and are there for them. They remain close in contact and visits, giving the children access to each parent. The time spent and how the decisions will be made regarding the issues that arise with the children is usually submitted in a parenting plan. This plan is written by the parents and will explain if they will seek counseling to help them learn to cooperate and communicate when it comes to the best interest of their children. With this type of custody the parents can create a type of visitation schedule where they both with have more contact with the children.

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Oregon Child Custody

Posted by admin on 27th April 2006

In Oregon the decision on child custody is determined by what is in the best interest and the welfare of the children. If a child has reached the age of 14 years they will be able to voice their preference. The court does however, make the final decision.

There will be no preference as to which parent is awarded custody but more often mothers are awarded custody because they are the main caretakers of the children because the fathers normally work and the mother stay as home.

There are a few set guidelines to aid the judge in deciding which parent is better fit to care for their minor children and they include:

* The preference of the children is at least 14 years of age.

* The relationship including emotional ties between the children and other family members.

* The interest both parents show in their children and toward their children.

* The desire to keep an active and continuing relationship with both parents and their children.

* If one parent has abused the other.

* The adjustment of the children in their home environment, their school, and their community.

In cases of joint custody in Oregon, the parent with the higher income is normally the person that is responsible for paying child support. There are a set of guidelines that will show just how much the support will be in cases of shared custody.

Most states are now leaning toward joint custody if it is at all feasible and there has been no evidence of any domestic abuse in the home. With joint custody, both parents can still make major decisions together for such things as medical, dental, school, and religious among any other items that need to be discussed. Normally, the children will spend time with each parent equally and will be able to continue talking with both parents on the phone, and having a close and loving relationship.

Sole custody can also be awarded in the state of Oregon. Sole custody means that only one parent makes the decisions in rearing the children, but they can not permanently move more than 60 miles without permission of the other parent or the court. The non-custodial parent usually has visitation rights unless it could be detrimental to the children.

The court will decide after hearing all the evidence and information which type of custody is better suited for the children as each child custody case is different.

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Oklahoma Child Custody

Posted by admin on 27th April 2006

Oklahoma has several different forms of child custody that is available for divorced parents. The type of custody that is chosen should be in the best interest of the children involved.

The different forms of child custody under Oklahoma law include:

Joint Custody is where both parents share in all the aspects of rearing their children including physical and legal care, custody and control their children.  If parents desire this type of custody they must apply to the court for a joint child custody plan. This plan will explain the time sharing between each parent and their children and the time should be split equally between both parents.

Sole Custody is where one parent will be responsible for the caring and well being of the children, and the non-custodial parent will have reasonable visitation rights and a schedule set forth for the times they can visit.

Split Custody is where each parent will have custody of one of their children.

Birdnesting is a type of divided custody. The children will always live in one home and the parents are the ones that rotate from home to home. The parents do not have to live in the same quarters, but will share equal time in the home according to a schedule that is agreeable to both parents.

Oklahoma has a few guidelines to aid the court and the judges to make decision concerning child custody that will ensure what is in the best interest of the children. The guidelines include:

* Domestic Abuse, if a parent has been convicted of child abuse or if anyone in the home has been convicted of abuse child custody will not be awarded to that parent, and visitation will be only under supervision.

* If the parent or anyone in the home has a problem with substance abuse.

* The relationship each parent has with the children.

* Evidence of immoral behavior in which it could harm the children, such as exposing the children to improper sexual contact and exposing the children to drug use.

* Oklahoma Law shows no preference to race, gender or if the parent wishes to have the children attend public school, private school, or home school.

* Which parent would be more apt to allow a continuing relationship with the other parent and allow frequent and continuing contact.

In the state of Oklahoma children are not heard in most cases. In 2002, Oklahoma passed a law that does allow children over the age of 12 to express their preference. The child’s testimony will not be heard in court but will be heard only in the judge’s chamber. At this time, the judge will decide if the child’s preference is in the best interest of the child.

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