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Although parents may differ on ideas about custody, the court looks out for the children’s best interest. That being said, there are ways of achieving a positive outcome for everyone involved.
An Akron child custody attorney at Erb Legal can review your situation and help you decide the next best steps. We understand Ohio child custody law and will help you throughout the legal process.
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Child custody matters are complex. Not only do you need to consider what you want, but you have to think about what would be best for the children. The court will focus solely on what is in the children’s best interests. The easiest way to meet your goals in a child custody battle is to work with a lawyer who can guide you.
When dealing with a custody matter in Akron, you will have to attend hearings before the Summit County Domestic Relations Court. The Administrative Judge is Katarina Cook, and the Judge is Susan Steinhauer. These judges have preferences in presenting legal documents, motions, and other information to the court. It’s important to know local judges, how they may rule, and be able to work with their staff effectively.
All courts have specific rules, including the proper paper size to file legal documents and the word count for various motions. The Akron child custody lawyers at Erb Legal know local court rules and are comfortable in the courtroom. We take cases to hearings frequently.
Your child’s other parent or anyone else involved in a custody case will likely have an attorney. That lawyer will want to discuss the details of child custody and try to work things out before the case goes to court. It would be best if you had a legal professional on your side who could negotiate the details to help you achieve your goals.
We know that you might think you know what is best for your child, but often it’s beneficial to negotiate an agreement between all the parties involved in a case. This reduces conflict and improves the chance that everyone will abide by the court’s final order.
Ohio recognizes two types of custody: sole custody and shared parenting (also called joint custody). The main differences in these types of custody are decision-making rights and physical custody.
Sole custody allows one parent to have primary control of making decisions for the child. That includes medical decisions and educational issues. The child would also live with the parent who has sole physical custody. The other parent would likely have visitation rights unless there is a compelling reason to deny it.
Shared parenting is typically the preferred method of allocating legal custody in Ohio. This custody arrangement encourages parents to work together and make decisions based on the child’s best interests.
One parent may have primary physical custody as a residential parent; however, the other parent would have visitation. Parents are encouraged to share time in a 50/50 time split with a shared parenting plan in some situations. When that is not feasible, parents should work out another plan.
When parents share custody, they typically create a Shared Parenting Plan that establishes the details of their parenting situation. The plan should identify decision-makers regarding medical care and education and who will pay for extracurricular activities and health insurance.
Our child custody lawyers help you develop a Shared Parenting Plan so that the agreement reached is fair to you.
Suppose neither of the biological parents are well suited to have custody of a child. In that case, a third party may get custody. The unsuitability of a natural parent is determined on a case-by-case basis. Grandparents, aunts, uncles, and other non-parents commonly seek control in complex custody situations. However, it is also possible for a person outside of the family to obtain custody.
Foster parents may seek to adopt or obtain custody of a child in some situations. These documents are typically complex and require some agreement by the biological parents or finding by the court that the natural parents are unfit.
The primary concern of Ohio courts is to ensure all child custody decisions are in “the best interests of the child.” According to Ohio Revised Code Section 3109.04(F)(1), the court will consider many factors when determining what is in a child’s best interests, including:
The court may also consider other factors as presented by a party in the case. It’s essential to gather as much evidence as possible to fight for the custody arrangement you feel is best for your family.
When you face a situation where you need to establish a child custody arrangement or modify an existing one, you deserve legal advice as quickly as possible. There are many factors to consider when working to meet the needs of your family and your child. The court will only be interested in your child’s best interests, but with strong legal arguments, you can have input.