During the divorce process, one of the measures to be taken is the guardianship and custody of the children of the marriage, provided that the children are not economically independent and live with their parents. We already talked about joint custody when we discussed divorce with children. In this article we explore how it works and what decisions are to be made.

What does joint custody mean and what implications does it have?

Child custody may be granted to one of the parents, in which case the parent without custody is entitled to a visits regime. Child custody may also be granted to both parents. In this case we speak of joint custody, which means that parents will share both the time and the care of children equally. Children will likewise spend half of the time with each spouse, even though in some cases of joint custody it is not shared exactly at 50%.

JOINT CUSTODY AND GUARDIANSHIP

Who decides joint custody?

In cases of mutual consent divorce or express divorce, parents may be the ones to make the decision to have joint custody. However, in contentious divorce the judge will make the decision based on the petition for divorce, on the response from the defendant and on the opinion of the public prosecutor’s office.

Should any of the parents have sole custody of the child, the other parent may request joint custody by filing for modification of the guardianship measures. This case often occurs when custody is granted solely to the mother on the grounds that the child is still a baby. Once the baby gets older circumstances may become favorable for joint custody.

Note that in some cases the judge may impose a trial period for joint custody so as to verify its suitability.

The child’s well-being comes first

We come to an important point about the guardianship of the children. The minor´s interest is what matters most. Contrary to what is often thought, joint custody is the best option for children in case of divorce. It has been evidenced that the fact that the child shares time with their parents is more positive (conditions permitting) than when they spend their time just with one of them.

Today it is very common that both parents work, so having joint custody of the children is much more common than a few years ago. It is noteworthy that parents should live in the same town for the joint custody to work out. In such way, the children’s school and social lives are not affected.

Do not hesitate to contact us for any doubts that may arise. Our team at Carbray will help you. Let us respond to your queries.

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