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Guardianship, conservatorship, and child custody are all terms that are used within the legal profession for the purpose of describing the relationship between a child and an adult/parent. This may or may not include the ability of the adult to make decisions on behalf of the child and what duty of care they possess.
Where a marriage falls apart is where issues relating to custody of a child or children arise. In these situations, it is helpful to hire a qualified lawyer, from the Joliet family law firm, to help with these proceedings. Where there is a dispute about which of the two parents the child or children will reside with, it is typically determined by wherever their best interests lie.
If this is determined to not be with either one of the parents, then the child or children are homed with someone else, such as a family member, family friend, or court appointed foster parent. However, this is very much an outcome of last resort, with everything first being done to keep them with a parent.
History of child custody
Prior to the 1970s, most cases involving custody for a child or children, saw them being homed with the mother. However, since then the laws relating to custody have become much more gender neutral, meaning that they are no longer automatically awarded to the mother and are, instead, based on what is best for the child or children.
Where disputes over custody exist, the cases can become quite acrimonious between the two parents. This can see some parents attempting to poison the mind(s) of the child or children in order to turn them against the other parent so that they do not want to live with them.
The UN’s 1992 Convention on the Rights of the Child has not yet been ratified here in the United States of America which means that the concept of access and custody still exist and have not been superseded by the concept of contact and residence, which is the case in many countries around the world.
During court proceedings, visitation and custody is referred to as ‘parenting time’. The idea behind this is that it creates a clear and precise distinction between those parents who have custody and those parents who do not. It also allows for better focusing on the interests of the child or children as schedules can be created that meet the ever-changing developmental needs that they have. For instance, younger children benefit from having shorter, more frequent visits, whereas as they grow older, they are able to tolerate much longer visits that lend themselves to in-depth discussion with their parent, but have these less often.
If you are currently embroiled in a custody battle for your child or children with their other parent then you would benefit from hiring a licensed practicing attorney for more than twelve years who would be able to represent you should the case have to go to court.
Also read: How a Child Custody Attorney Can Help Your Case
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