Child Custody

Custody Attorney

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Determining the physical and legal custody of a minor child is one of the most potentially emotional issues a divorcing couple may face. When parents divorce or separate and cannot agree about what is in their child’s best interest, the courts will intervene and decide. This can often turn an amicable and uncontested divorce into a contested divorce, and an attorney is invaluable in sorting these issues out. As a parent, you want to make sure that your child is protected. Having a skilled Hawaii child custody attorney can make a world of difference in the outcome of your case. At Ohana Legal, we aim to help our clients fight for their child’s best interest.

Child Custody Cases in Hawaii

Child custody refers to the legal guardianship involved in a divorce case. If you are considering how to create a parenting plan after a divorce, you need to be aware of the different types of child custody arrangements which are possible. In Hawaii and most other states, there are two forms of custody, legal and physical.

  • Legal custody refers to the child’s lifestyle. Religious, medical, and educational decisions are made by the legal custodian(s). Legal custody can be granted to one or both parents.
  • Physical custody refers to where the child lives. One parent may have sole physical custody, and the other may have visitation rights. Or, both parents may have physical custody, which means the child lives with each parent half of the time.

If a parent has visitation rights, the visits between parent and child occur on a schedule provided by the court. Usually this schedule is mutually convenient for both parents.

 Child Custody Agreements in Hawaii

When a child custody case is brought to the court in Hawaii, the court will try to accommodate the best interest of the child and choose the environment that offers the most stability. Some factors courts will take into consideration in a child custody case are:

  • The emotional, social, moral, and educational needs of the child;
  • The home environments offered by each party;
  • The interpersonal relationship between the child and each parent;
  • The preference of the child, if the child is old enough and mature enough to give his/her preference;
  • The mental stability of each parent (including any mental illness or drug use);
  • Any history of domestic violence; and
  • The safety of the child.

When determining the physical custody of the child, it is important to consider the parents’ work schedules, school or daycare schedule, distance between the parents’ homes, the proposed visitation schedule, and most importantly the best interests of the child. The court will generally take the child’s best interests into account as the determining factor in child custody decisions, sometimes considering joint custody. That is why it is vital to have experienced attorney to clearly present your Hawaii child custody case.

Ohana Legal  knows how contentious child custody cases can be.  By providing you with up to date legal knowledge and the best advice possible, your lawyer at our firm can make the custody decisions much easier for you and your family to make. For more information on representation and fighting for your rights as a parent, contact a Hawaii child custody lawyer from Ohana Legal today.

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