Going through a divorce and witnessing the impact that event may have on the lives of one’s children can be difficult for a Missouri parent to bear. It is often during negotiations related to the futures of their children that parents zealously fight for what they think with provide their kids with the best possible lives in the wake of divorce. Child custody is one of the biggest topics that a parent will have to address when their marriage comes to its end.

Child custody can be divided into two main categories: legal custody and physical custody. A parent who retains legal custody of their child after a divorce can stay involved in the important decisions that must be made regarding the child’s upbringing. For example, a parent with legal custody can have a say in where the child receives their education, and if their child will attend church as a part of their inclusion in a system of worship.

Legal custody can be shared by both of a child’s parents or may be granted solely to one parent, if the facts of the case warrant such a move. Likewise, parents can share physical custody of their children, or it may be given to just one of the parents. Physical custody concerns where a child will live after their parents’ marriage ends, and if a parent does not receive physical custody, they may be able to secure visitation rights.

This brief post is not intended to provide its readers with legal advice. Its intent is to introduce the two main forms of child custody to its readers and to help them clarify big picture child custody issues. Specific custody questions should be directed to family law attorneys who are familiar with the readers’ individual cases.