Child custody is a process that must be settled in any Rhode Island divorce involving two parents. How that process is completed, though, is something that might leave you scratching your head or feeling frustrated. Our friendly Rhode Island family law attorneys from Inman & Tourgee have compiled a helpful child custody FAQ list that you are going to want to read for some quick insights. If you have more questions, or you know already you want the representation of our law firm for your case, please feel free to call us at (401) 823-9200 to set up a consultation.
RHODE ISLAND CHILD CUSTODY FAQ
What does the court consider when deciding child custody?
The court will always try to rule in favor of a child's best interests. To figure out the best interests of your child, the court will ask questions or review evidence to learn about the mental and physical health of all parties, each parent's financial stability and living situations, the histories of each parent, and the relationships a child might have made with other relatives. The court will also ask a child directly what sort of custody arrangement they prefer if the child is deemed mature enough to make that decision.
What does physical custody mean?
A parent who wins physical custody has the right to live with and house their child after the divorce concludes.
What does legal custody mean?
A parent who wins legal custody retains the right to make important life decisions on behalf of their child. If you have legal custody of your child, then you can decide where they go to school, what medical care they receive, what religion they practice, and so forth. If your ex-spouse does not have any legal custody rights, then you do not have to weigh their opinions when making such decisions. Although, it is generally encouraged that you still consult with them for major life choices.
What are the different arrangements of custody?
Rhode Island has various arrangements for custody. Legal custody can be sole or joint, which describes one parent having that right or both. Physical custody can be one-parent, shared, or split. A shared custody arrangement allows the child to live with both parents on an alternating schedule. A split physical placement means each parent gets one-parent custody of one or more child when they are divorcing with two or more children.
If I do not win child custody, can I still see my kids?
Yes, with visitation agreements, you can still see your children. Unless there is a reason to believe you are a detriment to your child's wellbeing, you should receive some sort of visitation rights if you did not receive physical custody of your child.
Remember: If you still have questions or concerns, reach out to our child custody lawyers in Rhode Island by contacting us online at any time.