Child Custody Attorneys Serving Indianapolis and Greater Indiana
As a parent, your child is your top priority.
Your child’s best interests are your main concern, and your child’s welfare and mental and emotional health are important to you.
However, when you are going through an Indiana divorce, or simply trying to arrange for custody with the other parent, you may find it difficult to come to an agreement with the other parent.
Both of you love your child and want to be there to witness every special event and every accomplishment.
However, because you are not living together and raising your child together, you must either agree on how to co-parent or have the court intervene.
Unfortunately, the child custody dispute process is extremely emotional and stressful for each party. Oftentimes, a battle over custody becomes exhausting and can take a psychological toll on your child.
The best way to approach negotiations on child custody is to put differences and tension aside and focus on your child. Experienced and skilled Indianapolis child custody lawyers can help you accomplish this.
Our experienced Indiana child custody lawyers can help you advocate for your position and pursue the outcome you desire. To formulate an action plan for custody of your child, contact a child custody attorney in Indianapolis at Eskew Law, LLC by calling (317) 974-0177 or sending an online message today.
How Is Child Custody Determined in Indiana?
Child custody refers to two separate parental rights: (1) physical custody and (2) legal custody, which is the right to have legal decisions concerning the welfare and upbringing of your child. It is easiest to think of physical custody as being a parenting time order.
When you have the child, you have physical custody. There are tax implications to having physical custody as well. The court can award you both, only one, or neither. It is rare to find someone who has custody of the child more than 50% of the time, who does not have at least shared/joint legal custody.
Custody can be joint/shared or sole. Together with the other parent, you can try to sit down and fashion a child custody agreement that sets forth who gets what type of custody, when each parent can see the child, and who is responsible for making which decisions.
If you are unable to agree on your own, you can seek assistance through arbitration or mediation. If these options are not available to you, you can file for a determination with the court. The court will then determine what arrangement is in the best interest of your child.
When the Court Focuses on the Child
Though many custody battles focus on what each parent wants, the court will instead focus on the child. The court may consider what arrangement the child prefers when the child is 14 years or older.
The court will also consider the following factors:
- The child’s ties to the community through school, extracurricular activities, community activities, religious organizations, and more;
- The child’s relationships with other family members such as siblings and grandparents;
- Any special needs of the child and parents, such as medical conditions or mental health issues;
- The wishes of the parents;
- The child’s education or childcare;
- The parents’ backgrounds, including criminal history;
- Any history of domestic violence or neglect; and
- The wishes of a de facto custodian.
If the court awards joint legal and physical custody to the parents, they will share parenting time and decision-making.
If the court awards sole legal and primary physical custody to one parent, the other parent, absent extenuating circumstances, will be ordered to receive parenting time.
The court can provide the couple with a parenting time schedule that must work for both parties, as well as the child, though the court will not likely be creative.
If a party desires to modify the custody order because of new developments, the party may file a motion to modify with the court. They must present evidence to the judge that there is a significant change in circumstances and modifying the custody order is in the best interests of the child.
Contact Our Experienced Child Custody Lawyers in Indianapolis Today
If you are facing an Indiana child custody dispute, Eskew Law, LLC can help you facilitate negotiations, develop custody agreements or visitation plans, and advocate for your child’s best interests in court.
We take this privilege and responsibility seriously for all of our clients throughout Indianapolis and Central Indiana. To schedule a consultation, contact Eskew Law, LLC online or call (317) 974-0177 today.