Bucks County Family Law

Child Custody

Child Custody

Child custody is one of the most, if not the most, important aspects of a family. An attorney who understands the process and can negotiate on your behalf is crucial to obtaining the custody order you deserve. Without an attorney, you risk losing access to your children.

As an attorney specialized in Pennsylvania family law, Lauren D’Alessandro understands the various aspects of child custody law and negotiating tactics necessary to obtain a favorable custody arrangement. Lauren has negotiated numerous custody arrangements and will use that experience to assist you. Contact her to schedule an appointment and take the first step in ensuring your right to access to your children.

The Importance of a Custody Order

Among many other things, a custody order helps ensure that one parent does not prevent the other from seeing their child. This situation is sadly common, so obtaining an order is paramount. Without an order, there is little law enforcement can do absent extenuating circumstances. With an order, law enforcement will be able to protect your rights in regards to your children.

Custody orders also help create a routine for you and your children. You and your children will know who they’ll be with at a given time every week so you can have meals prepared, schedule events and activities, and/or perform other parental activities without fear the other parent and/or person will interfere with your parenting. A custody order makes parenting your children much more predictable.

Types of Custody

Custody orders involve two types of custody: legal custody and physical custody. Legal custody is the right to make major decisions on your child’s behalf. These include, but are not limited to, educational, religious, and medical decisions. This form of custody can either be sole or shared. In sole legal custody, one person holds the power to make the decisions. In shared legal custody, more than one person is able to.

Meanwhile, physical custody is the actual physical possession of the child. There are five forms of physical custody. They are sole, shared, primary, partial, and supervised:

  1. Sole physical custody is where one person has exclusive physical possession of the child.
  2. Shared physical custody is the right of multiple individuals to have exclusive physical possession of the child, where each of them they have equal time with the child.
  3. Primary physical custody is where one person has the majority of the exclusive physical possession of the child.
  4. Partial physical custody is where one person has the minority of the exclusive physical possession of the child.
  5. Finally, supervised physical custody is where one person is only able to have physical possession of the child with an agency or court ordered individual overseeing the person’s time with the child.

A child custody attorney can further advise you as to all the forms of custody and on how to obtain your desired form of custody.

Relocation of a Child When You Share Custody

When a custody order is in place but a person with custody is moving, the relocating person may be required to request permission from the court to do so. For persons who wish to relocate, discussing the situation with counsel is paramount. The attorney can advise you as to whether a relocation request is required and, if so, what is required for a court to approve that request.

Persons who are not relocating but know that a relocation is occurring should also seek counsel. The attorney will be able to advise such persons as to whether a request should be necessary and, if so, how to oppose that request if desired. If counsel is not sought, the relocating party could significantly impair the non-relocating person’s access to the children.

Impact of Criminal and Drug Histories on Child Custody

Criminal and drug histories can have significant impact on a person’s ability to obtain custody of children. Counsel can advise you as to how to overcome such histories. Trying to obtain or maintain custody without adequately handling such a history can cause substantial harm to your custody rights. Regardless of your criminal and/or drug history, you should not be afraid to consult with an attorney if you have or obtain such a history. If you are someone who knows the other party has or obtains such a history, counsel can help advise you on how to handle such matters too.

Modifying a Custody Order

Procuring a custody order is not the end. Overtime, our lives change. Such changes may require a custody order that can best fit a person’s new schedule or circumstances. In these situations, that person can ask the court to modify the custody order. An attorney can help either support or oppose a request to modify a custody order.

Hiring an Attorney Matters

Regardless of the area of family law you are litigating, hiring an experienced child custody attorney who specializes in family law is crucial. Attorney Lauren D’Alessandro represents clients in Bucks County, Montgomery County, and Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania. Her office is located in Newtown and she invites you to contact her to schedule a consultation. You can contact her here. She looks forward to hearing from you!

Lauren D’Alessandro

Lauren Anthony D'Alessandro's Profile Image
Lauren is located in Newtown, Pennsylvania and provides legal services for Bucks County, Philadelphia County, and Montgomery County. She specializes in family law and provides services for a whole range of family law matters. Whether you are seeking…

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