General Child Custody Information

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Voluntary Termination of Parental Rights

Termination of parental rights may be voluntary or involuntary. Voluntary termination of parental rights is difficult except under certain circumstances.

Termination of parental rights may be voluntary or involunta...

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Common Arrangements for Child Custody and Child Visitation

When two parents separate, child visitation is often the key issue. In every state, parents are urged to create a parenting plan either on their own or with the help of a mediator or collaborative divorce coach. The court will get involved and litigate the issue, but usually only if there are extenuating circumstances (i.e., domestic violence, drugs, abuse) or if the parents are unable to establish a custody or child visitation agreement on their own.

When two parents separate, child visitation is often the key...

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Child Custody Rights and Child Support Obligations for Step-Parents After Divorce

After a second divorce, child custody rights issues may get even more complicated. If young children have bonded with a step-parent, it might be in their best interest to continue to see the step-parent, and it might also be beneficial for both parents to continue to support the children.

After a second divorce, child custody rights issues may get ...

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What if both parents agree on child custody and visitation arrangements?

When separating parents do get along and can agree to a reasonable custody or visitation schedule for their child(ren), the court is generally going to be responsive in formalizing that agreement (i.e., parenting plan) and making it legal. If there is a substantial or significant change in circumstances since the original custody or visitation orders, courts again urge the disputing parents to resolve the differences, without the need for the court to modify the original order of custody or visitation.

When separating parents do get along and can agree to a reas...

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What is child custody?

Child custody refers to guardianship of a child. This may refer to physical custody, wherein you have the right to have the child physically under your care. It may also refer to legal custody, where you have the right to make decisions for a child but do not actually have the child living with you.

Child custody refers to guardianship of a child. This may re...

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Getting Your First Child Custody Order

The first child custody order in many paternity and divorce suits is actually a temporary order. Despite being a temporary order, this preliminary custody order can have an impact on future custody decisions.

The first child custody order in many paternity and divorce ...

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What is a custodial parent?

The terms custodial parent and non-custodial parent are used in instances where two parents of a child have broken up and are no longer living together. Under a custody arrangement, one parent may receive custody of the child; the child lives with that parent. That parent is the custodial parent. The other parent, who may have visitation rights depending on the circumstances, is referred to as the non-custodial parent.

The terms custodial parent and non-custodial parent are used...

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Non-Custodial Parent Rights

Non-custodial parent rights depend on whether the parent also has joint legal custody with the custodial parent.

Non-custodial parent rights depend on whether the parent als...

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The Use of Expert Witnesses in Child Custody Cases

Read this article to find out how expert witnesses can be used in child custody cases to convince the court that one parent should be granted custody.

Read this article to find out how expert witnesses can be us...

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Temporary Child Custody

Temporary child custody, issued through a temporary custody order, is a court's decision to award physical custody of a minor child to one parent pending a final determination of custody.

Temporary child custody, issued through a temporary custody ...

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How can a woman obtain a decree of paternity?

A woman can prove paternity, or obtain a decree of paternity which is a formal legal recognition that a specific man is the father of her child, in one of two ways. She may join with the father in signing and filing a formal document, or, if the man does not agree to sign the document, the mother can petition the court for a court order declaring the man's paternity. This may involve a court ordered paternity test.

A woman can prove paternity, or obtain a decree of paternity...

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