West Allis Child Custody

We provide personalized, professional legal representation you can depend on while dealing with West Allis child custody matters.

There is a lot at stake in child custody disputes, such as the child’s well-being, the parent-child relationship, the family’s finances, and much more. The custody process can be contentious and emotional, which is why you should not go through it alone. The West Allis child custody attorneys at MacGillis Wiemer, LLC, will protect your legal rights during child custody conflicts and help protect the best interests of your child.

The Best Interest Standard

All decisions affecting a child are made with the child’s best interests in mind. Courts use the best interests standard to set custody, visitation and child support, among other issues.

Courts use the following factors in determining a child’s best interests:

  • The parent or parents’ wishes
  • The child’s wishes
  • The relationship between the parents and child, the child and siblings, and anyone who may significantly affect the child (like a parent’s significant other)
  • The amount and quality of time each parent has previously spent with the child and lifestyle changes the parents would make to spend time with the child in the future
  • Whether the child would need to change homes, schools, or communities
  • The child’s age and developmental and educational needs
  • Whether another household member’s mental or physical health would affect the child’s intellectual, physical, or emotional well-being
  • The child’s need for predictability and stability
  • The availability of child care services
  • Whether the parties are willing to cooperate and communicate with each other
  • Each party’s willingness to support the child’s relationship with the other parent
  • Whether the child has been physically or emotionally abused
  • Whether the parent’s significant other or a person who lives in the household has ever abused a child
  • Whether there is evidence of domestic abuse, and
  • Whether either parent has problems with alcohol or drug abuse.

Sole Custody vs. Joint Custody

Sole custody means that one parent is legally responsible for making child care decisions, including medical and educational decisions. Joint custody means that both parents are involved in the child’s day-to-day life.

One parent might also have physical custody of the child, which means that the child will primarily live with that parent. The child could also split time equally between parents. The court will make an arrangement that is in the child’s best interests.

Modifying a Child Custody Arrangement

Only a court can modify a child custody arrangement. You must wait at least two years before requesting changes to the original custody agreement. You must also prove that there has been a substantial change in circumstances. For example, if the custodial parent develops a substance abuse problem or wants to move to another city or if there is evidence of abuse, then the court might reassess the original arrangement. Changes in a parent’s marital status or financial situation are not considered substantial changes. The modification must be in the child’s best interests.

Let Our West Allis Child Custody Attorneys Assist You

At MacGillis Wiemer, LLC, we protect you in child custody matters that affect both your parental rights and the best interests of your child. Get the professional legal representation you need in your case and contact our West Allis child custody attorneys today to request a free consultation.