Parents in Kentucky who are getting a divorce may create a parenting schedule, or a judge might make one for them. These negotiations may be difficult for parents, but they should be aware that if they go to court, one parent could end up with even less time with the child than the other parent originally offered.
As Kentucky parents go through the divorce process, they often focus on how the separation may affect their children. This is especially important when considering questions of child custody. There is a line of thought that says that granting sole custody to the mother is in the best interests of the child. Individuals who share this philosophy believe that infants and toddlers fare better when they are able to spend the night in the same home as their mothers. This has led to a number of fathers accepting an arrangement where the mother has sole custody.
Kentucky parents who are getting divorced should keep in mind that joint custody, not sole custody, is generally considered the best option for children. One psychologist published a study that concluded that shared parenting should be the norm for all children, including infants and toddlers. The study, which analyzed dozens of scientific studies on shared parenting and joint custody, came to the conclusion that prohibiting even young children from overnight stays with their non-custodial parents goes against modern understanding of child development.
Parents who are separated or going through a divorce in Kentucky may have questions about how the court will determine custody. While determinations can vary depending on the state, judge and even the court itself, they tend to follow a predictable set of guidelines.
Kentucky parents headed for divorce or separation are typically most concerned about the custody arrangements for their children. Depending upon the nature of the relationship between the parents, custodial agreements can take various forms. When parents get along well or have demonstrated an ability to set differences aside for the benefit of children, a true co-parenting relationship can exist. Such an arrangement involves having a general agreement regarding what is best for the kids and a willingness to make that a priority above all else.
Noncustodial parents living in Kentucky or any other state are generally allowed to see their children. Courts grant visitation rights to noncustodial parents in an effort to nurture an important bond between the parent and child. However, custodial parents may worry about the health and safety of their children during these periods of visitation. In some cases, a custodial parent can refuse to let a son or daughter visit with the other parent.
The legal system in Kentucky has yet to catch up with the fact that an increasing number of children are not born to married parents. Current births to unmarried parents account for 40 percent of births. In 2007, the rate of births to unmarried parents was only 18 percent. The trend has raised the number of birth certificates that do not list fathers.
Creating an effective parenting schedule is an important part of making sure children feel supported after a divorce. By working together to create a schedule, parents in Kentucky can demonstrate that they are putting the kids first.
In some divorce court proceedings in Kentucky, parents are denied custody of their children. This can happen for a number of reasons, including fear for the child's safety, avoiding a dual living situation and preference for the child's primary caregiver. Sometimes, denying custody to one parent doesn't have anything to do with the living conditions. Many courts strive to involve that parent in the children's lives as much as possible with generous visitation.
Generally speaking, a child's custodial parent is the one he or she lives with most of the time. However, Kentucky parents shouldn't assume that this is always the case. A court may require a parent to actually file for custody in family court even if the other parent isn't supporting the child financially or in other ways. This can be done either with an attorney or by filing pro se without one.