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child custody Archives

Tips for parents who are no longer together

Parents who are going through the divorce process in Massachusetts may be worried about what their lives will look like after the separation. However, divorce can also have an impact on any children that a couple may have. Therefore, it's important that parents are able to work together to ensure that their kids are able to adjust to their new reality. One way to do that is to be consistent.

Making parenting decisions with the child's well-being in mind

As many Massachusetts parents can attest, raising children after divorce can present challenges. Most parents are committed to putting the well-being of their kids first. Experience shows that the way divorced parents interact with their children and with each other has a lot to do with how well they have moved on after the divorce.

What parents can do in divorce if a child is not safe

During a divorce in Massachusetts, one parent may become concerned about the other parent's behavior around the child. In some cases, it could endanger the child's safety. This was the case with one father who was worried about his wife's drinking when they separated prior to filing for divorce. His main concern was that she would drink and drive with their 7-year-old son.

Determining child support in a joint custody case

In many child custody cases in Massachusetts, parents end up with shared physical and legal custody. For joint custody cases, the parents share all of the responsibilities of raising their children. This often includes sharing the financial obligations associated with the costs of raising a child.

Splitting custody and parenting time after a divorce

Following a divorce, getting back to a normal life can be difficult for everyone involved. While many parents in Massachusetts will have to learn to cope with limited custody time, the children may have a harder time adjusting to the fact that their one household suddenly became two. However, there are some ways that parents can help their kids adjust.

What happens when parents share legal custody

Legal custody may be granted to one or both parents after a divorce and refers to a parent's right to make decisions about major parts of a child's life including education, what religion the child will be raised in and health care. Legal custody is separate from physical custody, and a parent in Massachusetts who has visitation rights may share joint legal custody with the other parent.

Abusive parents and child custody

Some parents in Massachusetts who may have been in abusive relationships might be worried about protecting their children from the other parent. Unfortunately, according to the American Psychological Association, courts may dismiss an abuse history when making a decision about custody. Furthermore, in 2012, a report from the American Judges Association said that in around 70 percent of challenged cases, abusive spouses convinced a court that other parent was either unfit or should not get sole custody.

The Proposed Child Custody Law -- Will It Make a Difference?

There may be changes coming to the way child custody decisions are made by courts in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts if a proposed bill is passed into law by the state legislature. Bill S.834 has been presented to the legislature to replace the existing statute (Mass. General Laws Chapter 208, Section 31), and is currently under review and debate.

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