When family law judges in Arizona and around the country make child custody decisions, their primary concern is the welfare of the children involved. There was a time when the prevailing belief was that children fared better when they were cared for by their mothers, and judges generally awarded sole physical custody. However, things began to change in the late 20th century when research revealed the benefits of joint custody, and now these arrangements are rapidly becoming the norm.
Parents across Arizona and other states file for separation and eventually divorce their former spouses because of issues ranging from cheating to financial problems. During the proceedings, the judge will look at factors and determine both a child support order and a custody agreement. This order will name one person as the custodial parent and the other individual as the noncustodial parent. People can request a modification or change in either order if they think that they need one.
Parents in Arizona who get a divorce might also have to work out a parenting schedule. They should not treat this as an opportunity to get back at one another because they are angry about the divorce. The parenting schedule's purpose is for the child to be able to build a healthy relationship with both parents post-divorce.
Research suggests that parents in Arizona and throughout the country share custody of their children if possible. This is true even if the child is a toddler. Generally speaking, allowing a child to stay overnight with a mother or father is not going to harm their development. Furthermore, having both parents share custody can be good for the family as a whole. Children in such an environment had fewer mental, physical and behavioral problems.
It is generally important for children in Arizona to benefit from the presence of both parents in their lives, including after a high-conflict divorce. However, this issue can be complicated in the presence of abuse, including domestic violence against a parent or physical, sexual or mental abuse of a child. The issue of parental alienation is raised in court in contentious custody cases, but the realities behind such claims can be more complex than they first appear.
If a parent in Arizona is not granted custody of a child, that person is likely to be granted visitation rights. However, a visitation schedule may not look the same for all households. In some cases, a parent may be allowed to see a child on weekends or on alternating weeks. It is also possible that a parent will get to his or her child during school vacations or during the holidays.
Parents and children in Arizona normally enjoy a healthy mix of enjoyment and anxiety during the holidays due to the bustle of activity characteristic of this time of the year. However, families dealing with the added dynamics of divorce and the logistics of two households often face added dilemmas. Tension between exes can further complicate matters, which is why the recommendations discussed below are often made to help parents still experience the joy of spending the holidays with their children without added stress.
Child custody disputes can be incredibly stressful. For parents who have lost custody of their children, knowing that the court thinks their kids are better off with somebody else can be emotionally debilitating. However, there are ways to win back custody in Arizona.
Prior to turning directly to today's blog post subject matter, let's address for just a moment that "average" reference in the above entry headline.
Going through a divorce can be particularly difficult for Arizona parents, especially for those who will be sharing custody of their children. If the divorce was particularly contentious, parents may find it difficult to co-parent with their ex-spouse or ex-partner. However, working together can help the children transition from one household to two.