Menomonee Falls, WI Child Custody Lawyers
When your parental rights are being challenged by your former spouse, we will provide the passionate legal representation you need.
A person’s parental rights are not tied to marriage, so just because a couple gets divorced, does not mean that either party is now relieved of financially supporting the children. It will, however, be necessary for both parties to come to an agreement regarding how these obligations and rights will be divided, including how often each party will have physical access to the child and how decision making responsibility for the child will be shared.
Whether a family is able to come to an out-of-court agreement on these issues, or a family law judge is required to step in and create a parenting plan on a family’s behalf, it is important for both parties to be represented by an experienced Menomonee Falls, WI child custody attorney who can ensure that the best interests of the children are served.
How is Custody Divided?
Under Wisconsin law, custody is divided into two categories. The first is referred to as legal custody and involves the right to make decisions regarding a child’s health care, education, and religion. Most courts prefer to award joint legal custody to a child’s parents, which means that both parties will have an equal say when making these types of decisions on behalf of the child. However, courts are willing to award sole legal custody to one parent, who will then bear the brunt of responsibility for making major decisions on the child’s behalf. These rulings are rare and usually only apply if both parties agree to it or there is a history of domestic violence in the family.
The second part of a custody decision is known as physical placement, which refers to the time that a child actually spends with each parent. Like legal custody, courts presume that the participation of both parents in a child’s life is in his or her best interests. For this reason, most family judges prefer to award roughly equal physical placement between two parents, although what this looks like depends on a family’s specific circumstances, including how far apart the parties’ homes are from each other, as well as each party’s availability to provide care for the child, the parents’ wishes, and the needs of the child. Regardless of whether a family decides on a joint physical placement schedule or not, a court will only approve it if the plan allows a child to have meaningful and regular periods of placement with each parent and also maximizes the time that a child does have with each party.
Contact Us Today for Help with Your Case
Determining what type of schedule is in your own child’s best interests can be difficult. At MacGillis Wiemer, LLC, we are uniquely equipped to help you resolve these types of complicated legal issues, so if you are considering divorce and have children, please do not hesitate to contact us by calling 414-727-5150 or by filling out one of our brief online contact forms.