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Understand the many types of child custody

As you go through the divorce process, you'll want to learn as much as possible about the many types of child custody. After all, this detail will come to light in the very near future.

Before we go any further, you need to remember this: the court is staffed with the responsibility of doing what is best for your child. This may not be what's best for you, but keep in mind that your child is more important than anything else.

Here is a breakdown of the many types of child custody:

-- Physical custody. This is one of the most common types, meaning that one parent has the legal right for the child to live with him or her.

-- Legal custody. When a parent receives legal custody, it means that he or she has the legal right to make decisions regarding things such as healthcare and education.

-- Sole custody. In the event that one parent is unfit, such as due to a history of drug abuse, it's possible that the court could award sole custody to the other parent.

-- Joint custody. This can include joint physical custody, joint legal custody, or both of these. As the name implies, this is when the parents make joint decisions regarding the child, despite the fact that they don't live together.

As you go through divorce and think about the future, it's a good idea to understand the finer details, pros, and cons associated with each type of child custody. This will help you avoid any surprises as the process unwinds.

Source: FindLaw, "The Various Types of Child Custody," accessed Nov. 28, 2016

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