Carton & Rosoff PC-Attorney at Law

Resolving disputes creatively

What are the differences between legal and physical custody?

There are many people who get divorced every year in New York and divorce seems to be getting more and more common. The outcomes of these divorces will vary and be unique depending on the specific circumstances of each couple's marriage. However, the major issues that the couples will have to work through are the same. They will have to make decisions about dividing their assets and debts, spousal maintenance, child custody, visitation and child support.

One of the more difficult issues to have to deal with is custody. There are two different types of custody as well. There is legal custody and physical custody and many people may not know exactly the differences between the two. Custody in general means decision making, so legal custody means decision making for legal issues such as school choices, medical decisions, religious decisions and other major decisions. Physical custody means which parent makes the daily decisions while the child is in that parent's care.

Determining which parent will have custody can be a difficult decision though. It can be difficult for parents who both want to see their children to think about not seeing them as much or not being involved every day. Besides the emotional side of things, these decisions are also based on analyzing a number of factors and not a black and white rule to determine what is in the best interests of the child. This can include either one parent having sole custody or the parents sharing joint custody as well.

There are many parents in New York who get divorced and must make decisions regarding legal and physical custody for their children. These can be both difficult and complicated decisions which determine which parent will make both the major and day-to-day decisions for their children. However, these must be made before finalizing the divorce. Experienced attorneys understand the factors used to determine custody and may be able to guide one through the process.

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Carton & Rosoff PC
150 Grand Street, Suite 305
White Plains, NY 10601

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