It is an unfortunate reality that more than 40% of all marriages in the U.S. end in divorce. Nevada is no different to anywhere else in the country as far as the incidence of divorce is concerned. Often the people who are most affected by a separation or divorce are the joint children of the couple going through the divorce. Sorting out the custody of a child or children can be fraught with emotion and it is important that decisions are finally made that put the interests of the children first and foremost.
In some cases, arrangements for the custody of the child or children are completely amicable and the need for a family law attorney or the use of the Nevada Family Law Court is unnecessary. As far as the children’s future welfare is concerned this is certainly the preferred one. However, realistically, there is often a dispute about who should care for the children and what rights each parent has when it comes to making decisions about the children’s future. This is when it is important that you should contact an experienced and sympathetic family law attorney as soon as possible and it is likely that a decision will be made finally by a judge at a family law court. It is a primary focus f the family law court that custody rights are awarded based on what the judge at the time considers the best interests of the child or children to be.
Types of custody decisions
When a Nevada Family Law Court, such as the one in Clark County here in Las Vegas judge decides on child custody there are principally two sets of decisions to be made. One of these decisions is who the child or children will physically live with. This is called ‘physical custody’. There is also who will be responsible for making decisions about the children’s education, medical care, what they will or will not be able to do etc. This is called ‘legal custody’.
When making decisions about physical and legal custody, the court will decide whether to award sole or joint rights in either case. For instance, if there has been a history of physical and mental abuse by one parent against the other parent and the children, the court will most likely award sole physical and legal custody to the parent who was abused.
In most cases, where there has been no evidence of any violence r abuse of any sort in the family and there has simply been a breakdown in the parental relationship, there will be likely to be a case for joint custody. This might mean that one parent is given physical custody of the children while the other parent is given specific visitation rights or both parents have alternate periods of physical custody. Where joint custody is the final decision, the legal custody will be shared. In other words, any decisions made about the way the children are brought up will be made by agreement between the two parents.
Factors influencing the custody decisions by a Nevada family law court
The court will have to take into consideration as much useful and relevant information as possible about what is best for the children before making a decision. Providing documentation and evidence that supports your case for custody is important at this stage and it is here where the help from an experienced family law attorney is critical. These are some of the factors that the judge will take into consideration:
- If there is a history of child abuse in the family by one (or both) parents;
- The emotional attachment to one or other of the parents by the child(ren);
- The emotional bond between siblings (in most cases the decision will be to not break up the relationship between siblings, however far apart they are in age);
- The emotional, mental and physical state of each of the parents i.e. their ability to take care of the children;
- The level of conflict between the parents and their ability to make joint decisions and share joint custody of their children sufficiently amicably;
- The emotional, mental and physical condition of the child(ren).
If you are currently involved in legal separation or divorce in Nevada for whatever reason and are concerned about the custody of your child or children, you should contact the Law Office of Pintar Albiston in Las Vegas as soon as you can. Ring 702-685-5255 today.
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