A divorce or breakup can be devastating, especially when children are involved. It can be difficult to share parenting time with your estranged partner, especially on a schedule. However, you’re not alone.
According to the U.S. Census American Community Survey, Tennessee has more than 460,000 single-parent households. As such, child custody arrangements are faced by many but each person’s situation is unique. Further adding to complications, arrangements may be modified as the children grow or circumstances require.
If you live in Chattanooga or its adjacent counties, the Law Offices of Fisher Wise can help you to create an equitable parenting plan. I also serve mothers and fathers in Hamilton County, Bradley County, Meigs County, and Marion County.
Differences Between Legal Custody and Physical Custody
Legal custody and physical custody are different, and a parent could have neither or both. To have legal custody means that a mother or father has the right to make long-term decisions for the child, such as where they will go to school or which doctor they will visit. Often both parents are afforded legal custody of their children.
Whenever a parent is in the actual presence of their son or daughter, they have physical custody of them. This may be because the child lives with them, or it may occur during parenting time. When a parent has physical custody, they can make everyday decisions about their child’s care, such as what to eat, where to play, or how to render first aid.