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Creating A Child Custody Agreement: Things To Consider

One of the biggest challenges for many divorcing parents is establishing a solid plan for child custody. There are many different aspects that go into a custody agreement, and it's important that you work with a child custody attorney to be sure that the agreement you and your former spouse come to is legally enforceable. Here's a look at some of the components required in a thorough child custody agreement.

Physical And Legal Custody Details

The core component of any child custody agreement is the determination of physical and legal custody. Understanding the difference between the two is important as well. Legal custody refers to which parent has the legal right to make decisions, complete school enrollments, make medical determinations, and more.

Physical custody, on the other hand, refers to who the child lives with. Physical custody can vary between one parent having primary physical custody and the other parent having only limited visitation or both parents having shared physical custody where the child splits their time equally between both homes.

Visitation Schedules

The next component that must be clearly defined in the child custody agreement is the visitation schedule. If one parent retains physical custody, the visitation schedule must clearly define the other parent's visitation times, including days, times, holiday schedules, school vacations, and more.

Visitation schedules must also define how the child will be transferred between parents, including who will travel to whom and when. The more information you can include, the easier the process will be because expectations will be clearly defined.

Communication Information

In an age of digital communication, it's essential that you incorporate a communication agreement as part of your child custody arrangement. That agreement must define how and when each parent can communicate with the child during the other parent's time. Whether video calls are required daily or contact is limited to a single phone call during each period, it's important to detail this information.

Conflict Resolution Methods

Most judges look for conflict resolution information when they review child custody agreements. You should include information about the methods you and your former spouse must follow in the event of a conflict where you cannot come to an agreement on your own. 

Whether it's a change that's needed in the visitation schedule or there's a child that doesn't want to visit the other parent, you should have a process clearly detailed for coming to a final decision.

Talk with a child custody lawyer, like Kenneth J. Molnar, today for more help.