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Louisiana Joint Custody Versus Shared Custody

Following a divorce or separation, continuing to co-parent with your ex can be a challenging prospect. Striking a fair balance between your ability and willingness to care for the children and your ex’s desire to do so sometimes requires outside-the-box solutions. Ultimately, the best interests of your children will take paramount priority.

Various child custody arrangements can help you remain involved in your children’s lives while taking into account practical and logistical considerations. Many parents aim for shared or joint custody. While similar, these arrangements involve some differences, and it is important to work with an attorney in finding out which is best for your situation.

Shared Custody: Equal Time, Equal Authority

In a shared custody arrangement, both parents spend equal time with the children, and both have equal parenting responsibilities and legal authority. This arrangement typically requires a high level of cooperation. You must be able to work together with your ex to communicate well and accommodate your children’s needs.

From a practical standpoint, shared custody also requires that both parents live in relatively close proximity to each other. The children cannot realistically spend equal time with both parents if you live hours apart.

Joint Custody: Equal Authority, Unequal Time

Joint custody is similar to shared custody in that both parents have equal legal authority regarding major decisions in the children’s lives. However, unlike shared custody, both parents do not have equal time with the children. Instead, you will work out a schedule that best suits the children’s needs.

Joint custody still provides both parents with the opportunity for frequent and consistent interaction with the children. However, it is not a 50-50 arrangement.

Which Is Right For You?

Both shared and joint custody offer certain advantages and disadvantages. At the law firm of Betsy A. Fischer, LLC, we can assist you in pursuing a custody arrangement that fits your family’s needs. Our lawyer understands how to strategically approach important custody issues. Drawing on more than 20 years of family law experience, we will work diligently to guide you through the process toward a workable solution.

To get started with a private consultation, please call our office in Metairie at 504-780-8232, or contact us online.