Even when parents are not married, they both have legal rights and obligations regarding their minor children. One of the central issues in divorce cases is child custody, which is termed the allocation of parental rights and responsibilities under Ohio law. Despite the updated terminology, many of the concepts you understand about custody are probably familiar. It covers how parents make decisions about important areas of the child’s life, including education, medical care, extracurricular activities, religion, travel, entertainment, and more.
If you are considering divorce or have a case pending, an important priority is retaining an Ohio child custody lawyer near you. An attorney is experienced with state statutes and case law, as well as the local rules and procedural details. You can feel confident your case is in good hands, knowing that legal counsel is on your side to protect your rights as a parent. It is also useful to review some background about child custody laws in Ohio.
Ohio law takes the view that the child benefits by having a relationship with both parents and that each parent should also participate in important decision-making. The most common format for child custody is sharing as co-parents in the allocation of parental rights and responsibilities. The arrangement may result from the following:
If it is necessary to go before a judge to resolve child custody issues, the court is required to consider the child’s best interests in making its determination.
In addition to being the standard for deciding child custody disputes, the best interests of the child are also reviewed in connection with a parenting agreement. The factors generally relate to the physical, mental, and developmental well-being of the child, and they include the following:
A key distinction in these cases is joint versus sole custody, and the courts prefer parents to share in decision-making. However, when it would be inappropriate, unsafe, or contrary to the child’s best interests, a judge may not award joint custody. One parent may have sole custody, but the other may still be allowed supervised visitation.
This overview on the allocation of parental rights and responsibilities is helpful, but it is crucial to retain experienced legal counsel to help with your case. To learn how our team at Fout Law Office, LLC can assist, please contact our offices in North Canton, OH. We can set up a consultation to learn more about your situation and explain the laws.
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