Custody
Children and the Law
Child Support

Is there any reason to get legal custody of a child if the parents are separated but get along and have no visitation or support issues?

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2009-06-12 17:21:28
2009-06-12 17:21:28

Yes, because one day difficulties will arise and then if the other parent petitions first that parent usually gets what they want. One day one of you might decide to get remarried and that will cause several disagreements. ----

As stated by the first answer, things can arise to create difficulties. But, this need not require the hiring of attorneys. WARNING: LONG WINDED OLD FART

An uncontested divorce or paternity action need not require the two of you to hire attorneys. You need only find a Certified Mediator, hack out the agreement, in detail, file it with the court, and set a hearing date. On that day the judge will swear both of you in, ask if you both agree to the terms set down in the document, than everyone signs it. Generally, there is a 30-60 day waiting period for the document to be recorded with the county and state registries.

The mediator will be a lawyer or paralegal, with specialized training. Each of you MUST pay half the fees. The fees could run from $200 to $1000, depending on the going rates in your area, and time spent on the document. Court fees could run $50 to $150, but if you are tight on money, you could request a waiver.

These are the things you NEED to cover in the document.

CUSTODY Soul Custody Joint Legal Custody Joint Physical Custody Bird Nest Custody (see below)

VISITATION

How close do you live to him?

How old is the child?

How often?

What specific weeks, or months?

What specific holidays on in a list of years, do each parent get the children?

What if the custodial parent wants to move out of state?

MEDICAL

Who covers medical insurance?

Who decides on treatment?

CHILD SUPPORT

How much?

Weekly, Bi-Weekly, or Monthly?

How Long? Eighteen, High School, or End of College

Do you split the cost of college?

What state(s) may they attend in?

What is the minimum amount of college credit hours the child must take?

Who gets the tax deduction(s)?

What if the child gets pregnant? Does child support stop?

DEATH

If the residential parent dies, who gets the child? Never assume anything.

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It's a form of access or custody where the children stay in the former family residence and it is the parents who rotate in and out separately and on a negotiated schedule.

The children simply live at "home" and the separated or divorced parents take turns living with them there, but never at the same time.

The core element of this arrangement is that each parent maintains a separate residence where they live when it is not their turn at the "bird's nest". When one parent arrives for his/her designated time, the other vacates right away, so as to minimize or eliminate the presence of both at the same time.

At times, bird's nest access can be coupled with specified access with the other parent say, for example, for dinner one night a week.

Sometimes, this form of access or custody will end when the youngest child reaches the age of majority at which time, one parent either buys the other out of their interest, if any, in the former family residence, or it is sold and the proceeds divided pursuant to the matrimonial property regime or separation agreement.

The arrangement can be expensive as it generally requires that three separate residences be maintained, the "nest" and a separate residence for each parent.

The concept is somewhat novel and appears to have as its origin a Virginia case Lamont v Lamont. In Canada, Greenough v Greenough was a ground-breaker case in that the Court implemented a bird's nest custody order even though it had not been asked for by either party. Justice Quinn, in Greenough stated:

"In Lamont ... the court made a bird's nest custody arrangement in which the children (aged 3 and 5 years) remained in the home, with the mother staying in the home during the week and the father on the weekend. I think that the benefits of a bird's nest order are best achieved where the children are able to stay in the matrimonial home, particularly if it has been the only residence that they have known....

"Time and time again I have seen cases (and this is one) where the children are being treated as Frisbees. In general, parents do not seem to appreciate the gross disruption to which children are subjected where one of the parents has frequent access. In this regard, I do not believe there must be evidence that the children are suffering before the court is free to act. To me, it is a matter of common sense. At the risk of falling prey to simplistic generalities, I am of the view that, given a choice, I do not see why anyone would select a living arrangement which involved so much movement from house to house." See link below

May I ask why the divorce or separation? It's very important that the child(ren) have both parents in the home. Is there nothing that can be done to preserve this?

See links below

Stanford University Divorce, Nontraditional Families, and Its Consequences For Children

"We know that children of divorced parents have more emotional and behavioral problems and do less well in school than children who live with both their Parent."

Fortune Magazine: Crime & Fatherless Families

"Ominously, the most reliable predictor of crime is neither poverty nor race but growing up fatherless."

Stay Married & Save The Planet

JOINT CUSTODY: Equal Time

How I divide my life between my divorced parents' homes. By Charlotte Juerge - Newsweek Web Exclusive - Dec 15, 2008

Father Makes Two - Time Magazine

By Margot Roosevelt Sunday, Nov. 11, 2003

Stupid Things Parents Do to Mess Up Their Kids

Ten Stupid Things Couples do to Mess up Their Relationships

The Proper Care and Feeding of Marriage

Fatherless America : Confronting Our Most Urgent Social Problem

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Related Questions


Yes. If you are legally separated then you are still married and both parents have equal rights and obligations to the child. The court can issue a support order, custody order and visitation order if necessary. You should consult with an attorney to determine your options under your state laws.Yes. If you are legally separated then you are still married and both parents have equal rights and obligations to the child. The court can issue a support order, custody order and visitation order if necessary. You should consult with an attorney to determine your options under your state laws.Yes. If you are legally separated then you are still married and both parents have equal rights and obligations to the child. The court can issue a support order, custody order and visitation order if necessary. You should consult with an attorney to determine your options under your state laws.Yes. If you are legally separated then you are still married and both parents have equal rights and obligations to the child. The court can issue a support order, custody order and visitation order if necessary. You should consult with an attorney to determine your options under your state laws.

How does he have any visitation rights with a custody and child support order?

Child support and custody/visitation are separate issues. You should contact your local courts to file for visitation/custody if the custodial parent is denying visitation.

The mother has full custody. The father have to prove paternity by providing DNA in court and he can then ask for custody, visitation and pay child support.

If the parents are going to split up, one needs to file with the courts to define custody, child support, visitation, etc.

Child support and visitation are separate issues and visitation rights are not dependent on paying child support. He has the right to petition the court for visitation and custody as well as the responsibility to pay child support. The courts encourage the involvement of both parents in the child's life. If the parents are not married the father may need to establish his paternity before petitioning for visitations or custody.

No. Child support, visitation and custody are separate issues that must be addressed by court orders. The father must petition the same court for a visitation order. If the parents cannot agree on a schedule one will be set by the court.

Absolutely. Unless the other parents rights have been terminated by a judge, (s)he must pay child support according to the state calculator. Visitation and custody are not related to support.

In the US, if you're separated you can get a temporary order for child support. By the way, it's a good idea to get temporary orders for custody and visitation too.

In Alabama custody and visitation have nothing to do with child support. Not sure about other states.

The mother. The father have to apply in court for visitation or custody after paternity have been established. Then he can also pay child support.

The mother automatically have custody since there is no doubt she is the parent. The father have to establish paternity by doing a DNA test and then he can petition for visitation, custody and also pay child support.

If you are not married and there is no custody or visitation order, she has custody automatically. The father have to prove paternity in court by a DNA test and then petition for custody or visitation. He can then also pay child support.

It depends on who has physical custody. Often the parents have joint legal custody, the mother has physical custody and the father has a visitation schedule. In that case she will receive child support. If the child will split time between the parents the state has a formula in the child support guidelines. You can find various websites that provide information regarding Georgia Child Support Guidelines by performing an online search using that phrase. See related link.It depends on who has physical custody. Often the parents have joint legal custody, the mother has physical custody and the father has a visitation schedule. In that case she will receive child support. If the child will split time between the parents the state has a formula in the child support guidelines. You can find various websites that provide information regarding Georgia Child Support Guidelines by performing an online search using that phrase. See related link.It depends on who has physical custody. Often the parents have joint legal custody, the mother has physical custody and the father has a visitation schedule. In that case she will receive child support. If the child will split time between the parents the state has a formula in the child support guidelines. You can find various websites that provide information regarding Georgia Child Support Guidelines by performing an online search using that phrase. See related link.It depends on who has physical custody. Often the parents have joint legal custody, the mother has physical custody and the father has a visitation schedule. In that case she will receive child support. If the child will split time between the parents the state has a formula in the child support guidelines. You can find various websites that provide information regarding Georgia Child Support Guidelines by performing an online search using that phrase. See related link.

Depends on circumstances. A single mother has a presumption of sole custody at the time of the birth of the child. Where married parents are separated, there is a presumption of joint physical custody whether or not support is ordered.

mother has sole custody, father has child support obligation. see link

The mother. The father have to go to court to get his parental rights by providing a DNA test. he can then petition for custody, visitation and pay child support.

The mother. The father have to petition the court for visitation and custody after paternity has been established with a DNA test. Then he can also pay child support.

Visitation and child support are separate issues. One does not depend on the other. Parents must provide support for their children. There are many variations in visitation rights and those do not generally affect child support obligations.Visitation and child support are separate issues. One does not depend on the other. Parents must provide support for their children. There are many variations in visitation rights and those do not generally affect child support obligations.Visitation and child support are separate issues. One does not depend on the other. Parents must provide support for their children. There are many variations in visitation rights and those do not generally affect child support obligations.Visitation and child support are separate issues. One does not depend on the other. Parents must provide support for their children. There are many variations in visitation rights and those do not generally affect child support obligations.

Generally, if the parents are unmarried, the mother has sole custody until the father establishes his paternity legally. Until then she can refuse visitation. However, when the father's paternity has been established he can request custody and/or a visitation schedule. He will also need to pay child support if the mother retains physical custody.

The mother automatically have custody from birth and the father can petition for custody, visitation and also pay child support after he has proved paternity in court by providing a DNA test. As long as the mother is fit he will get shared custody at the most.

She already has sole legal custody as an unmarried mother. He can petition for visitation and pay child support.

It's all up to the courts to decide. A mother can request full sole legal custody of the child even if the father has visitation rights and pays child support. The mother does need to prove to the courts why full sole legal custody is in the child's best interest.

When the parents are unmarried the mother has sole custody until the father establishes his paternity legally in court. Once established he can request joint custody and/or a visitation schedule. He will also be subject to a child support order.


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