Custody and Parenting Time (Visitation) cases can be very stressful and can have very negative results for children and families. The court prefers that the parties work collaboratively to develop an agreement that best suits the children. The parties need to effectively communicate with one another both parties need to have frequent and meaningful parenting time to provide the best possible situation for the children.
Child custody usually involves: 1) one parent having sole custody or 2) both parents having joint custody, which is called shared parenting. Shared parenting is preferred, if the parties can work together to support the best interest of the child/children. Shared parenting does not affect parenting time or child support; it simply gives the parents equal rights in the decisions affecting a child’s life.
If the parents were not married when the child was born, Ohio law gives the mother sole custody of the child. The father must establish paternity and file for parenting time (visitation) or custody. By agreement of the parties or by litigation, the court then will decide to grant the father parenting rights and visitation through a court order.
If the mother and father were married, they both share equal custody rights to the child. If they decide to end the marriage, either by agreement or litigation, the court will then ultimately decide sole or shared custody, and child support as well as issue temporary orders regarding parental rights while a divorce action is pending.Ohio Revised Code Section 3109.04 provides guidance on determining what is in the best interest of the child/children involved. This includes:
- the wishes of the parents
- the wishes of the child
- the child’s relationship with the parents and other family members involved
- the child’s adjustment to his home and school and
- the parent more likely to facilitate a strong relationship with the other parent
Cincinnati Family Law Attorneys
When shared parenting is involved, the court also takes into consideration the ability of the parents to cooperate with each other to make important decisions and their ability to encourage strong relationships with both parents. It is crucial to have an attorney with extensive experience in family law. Our Cincinnati family law attorneys will work with you to resolve custody issues treat you with compassion and sensitivity during this emotional time.