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Things to consider while making child custody decisions

The process of going through a divorce isn't really fair. You're still reeling from the dissolution of your marriage, and the life change that goes along with it, and all the while, you're forced to make monumental decisions regarding property division, child support, child custody and visitation. It can all be a little overwhelming, especially because the process can become so complicated that you feel helpless against the turning of the wheels.

With that in mind, let's discuss in detail the process of deciding child custody: how to mentally walk through the process and what you can expect:

  1. First, you should think about where your child will best be served. Is she better off with both former spouses making decisions? Would moving in with you mean leaving a school or neighborhood in which she's established? Is the other parent completely unfit to care for the child?
  2. Ask yourself if you want to be in charge of the decision or whether you want the courts to decide for you. If you and your former spouse would like to work it out, mediation and collaborative law is always an option. If you can't come to an agreement, the courts will decide matters of physical custody and visitation schedules.
  3. You may want to consider the child's wishes if he or she is old enough to weigh in.

As always, having an attorney on your side who's been through the process can be an invaluable help in making sure the best interests of the child are served.

Source: findlaw.com, "Custody Considerations: Step-By-Step," retrieved June 5, 2015

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