How Does Child Custody Work?

Child Custody

Child Custody refers to the legal arrangement that a court makes for the care of a child. It is usually a shared decision between the parents that enables each parent to have a physical and emotional association with the child. The court can grant sole physical custody to one parent or both parents, or joint custody (working custody). If the court grants joint custody to one or both parents, it becomes known as full custody.


When parents decide to share custody or have joint custody, they should discuss important issues concerning their children. These include how to handle the major decisions such as who to live with, which school to attend, religious beliefs, or which health care provider to use. The parents should also discuss visitation rights, where to go on holidays, and what privileges are available. The court will consider the best interests of the child in making these decisions.


A St. Louis family law attorney can help you if you are going through a divorce and are seeking custody or visitation rights. An attorney can explain the various issues concerning custody and can explain what is involved in a St. Louis county courtroom. If you are seeking a divorce, then your St. Louis family law attorney will be able to tell you what your rights are. You can work with your attorney to resolve the issues concerning the custody and visitation. Your St. Louis family law attorney can help you save time and money when dealing with the courts. If you are looking for a St. Louis family lawyer to help you concerning child custody, visit


In a St. Louis county court, you will be represented by a Family Law Judge. A judge is the person who decides what is fair for the children. If either parent wants to be in control of making major decisions for the children, then the judge will make that decision. In cases involving child custody and visitation, then the judges decide who gets custody of which child and how and when those decisions will be made. When a parent has a physical custody arrangement, the judge will make that decision. For instance, if one parent wanted to be involved in making decisions about education and medical care for the children, then the judge may order joint physical custody.


Missouri court decisions in cases involving custody and visitation often have legal implications. Therefore, you should consult with a family law attorney in the area of your divorce or your case. He or she can explain what is expected from you and your spouse, as well as what you can expect from the court. This is particularly important if the custody and/or visitation will involve any sort of child support agreement. You will want to ensure that the payments are sufficient for your needs and that the arrangement is binding.


In some St. Louis County Courtrooms, joint legal custody agreements are more common than sole. Sometimes the parents want to create a situation where both they and their child have joint legal custody and that decision is honored by the court. In those situations, the judge will order joint legal custody and the parties will fill out a joint legal custody agreement. Then the parents will work out an visitation schedule that suits their needs and that the court supports.

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