The central focus of every custody hearing is always the child’s best interest. With the assistance of your legal counsel you will navigate your custody case to reach a result in your child’s best interest.
Under South Carolina law, custody is divided into two categories: legal and physical custody.
Legal Custody Rulings
A parent who has legal custody has final decision-making authority for all major decisions regarding their child’s health, education, and general welfare. In some cases parties may agree to share “joint legal custody” of a child with one parent being designated as the primary custodial parent and the other as the secondary custodial parent. In a joint custody agreement the primary parent may have the duty to consult with the secondary custodial parent prior to making a major decision regarding the child’s health, education, and general welfare – but if the parties are unable to agree, the primary parent would retain the final decision-making authority.
Physical Custody Rulings
Physical custody determines the child’s main place of residence. There are three options regarding physical custody: sole custody, joint custody and, a hybrid of the two, split custody.
Sole custody is the most common outcome for child custody cases. Sole physical custody means that the child lives full-time with the parent awarded sole custody (custodial parent), while the other parent (noncustodial parent) is granted visitation rights, allowing the child to visit on alternating weekends and shared holidays.
Joint custody, or a co-parenting arrangement, splits the time and responsibilities between both parents more equally than in sole custody rulings. Successful joint custody requires that parents cooperate peacefully and effectively for their child to prosper from the arrangement.
Split custody is a hybrid model of the two, sometimes enacted when multiple children are involved in a divorce. In this case, Parent A will act as custodial parent to Child A and noncustodial parent to Child B, while Parent B will do the opposite.
Bleecker is in your corner.
If you need unmatched legal counsel, Bleecker Family Law is always in your corner. Our skilled team of dependable attorneys can assist with family law matters both in and out of court, including custody services and support. Visit our website to explore our full list of services, and contact us today to connect with our skilled team of representatives.