When parents divorce, one of the many decisions they must make is regarding custody of their children. Physical custody is one part of this decision. There are two types of physical custody arrangements available to divorcing parents. Here’s a look at them:
Sole physical custody
In a sole physical custody arrangement, the child lives with one parent and has visitation time with the other parent. The parent with whom the child lives is known as the custodial parent, and the other parent is known as the noncustodial parent.
Sole physical custody arrangements can be court-ordered in cases where there is a history of abuse or neglect. In addition, some parents may choose to have a sole physical custody arrangement if they live in different states or if one parent works long hours.
While a sole physical custody arrangement can be beneficial for the custodial parent and the child in certain circumstances, it can also be difficult for the noncustodial parent to maintain a close relationship with the child.
Joint physical custody
Joint physical custody means that both parents have significant periods of time with their child. It is based on the belief that it is in the child’s best interests to have a strong relationship with both parents.
There are many benefits to joint physical custody, including the ability to provide a more stable home life for the child and the opportunity for the child to develop a strong bond with both parents. Additionally, joint physical custody can help to reduce conflict between the parents, as they are both actively involved in the child’s life.
When making the decision of which type of physical custody is best for your child, it is important to weigh all the options and choose what will be in the child’s best welfare. Remember that any custody arrangement can be changed down the road if needed, so don’t feel like you are stuck with one option.