In Ontario, there are several different types of child custody divorcing couples may seek, depending upon the circumstances and reason for the divorce. It is essential to fully understand the differences and what rights they provide. If you are ever confused by a custody arrangement or your ex-spouse demands a modification, never go to mediation or court without being represented by an Ottawa family lawyer.
The general definition of child custody simply means you and/or your ex-spouse has the right to make important decisions in regards to your children, such as medical treatment, education, and religion. In addition, you are responsible for the children’s care and upbringing. There are variations to custody arrangements, such as:
Joint Custody:Courts normally award joint custody in situations where both parents are able to amicably work together in making important decisions in regards to their children. Since both parents have an equal say in decision making, one parent is not allowed to make a decision without first consulting with the other, except in emergency and life-threatening situations. In this type of a scenario, the primary residence of the child is with one parent and the other parent gets access in accordance with the best interests of the child.
Shared Custody:This type of custody arrangement is where both parents share decision-making and the child resides on a week on / week off basis with each parent, or 60% of the time with one parent and 40% with the other parent.
Sole Custody:Depending upon the circumstances of the divorce, if the court feels one parent lacks the capacity to make important decisions for the minor children one parent can be given Sole Custody with respect to the decision-making and the other parent would be awarded access.
Going through a divorce is a stressful time, especially when minor children are involved. It is important to protect your interests by retaining the services of an experienced family lawyer in Ottawa, like Davies Law Firm. Call 613-688-0462 today to discuss your options.