What is the Most Common Child Custody Arrangement? 

A child custody arrangement is a legal arrangement that divides a child’s time between both parents. It is often referred to as shared physical custody. Shared physical custody involves the child living in both parents’ homes, but important decisions about the child’s welfare are made solely by one parent. Some of the most common joint custody plans include the 2-2-3 and 2-2-5 plans. 

Joint custody 

Joint custody is the most common type of child custody arrangement. It allows both parents to share the responsibility of caring for the children, including making decisions about the children’s education, religion, and extracurricular activities. It also provides both parents with possession rights. A skilled attorney can explain the benefits and limitations of joint custody and how to decide whether it’s best for your children. 

Joint custody involves both parents sharing decision-making power. Usually, both parents are equally involved in the decisions regarding the children, but sometimes only one parent is granted full decision-making power. In such a situation, there may be certain arrangements for visitation, such as supervised visits for parents who might pose a safety threat. 

Sole physical custody 

In a typical child custody case, one parent gets sole physical custody, while the other gets regularly scheduled time with the child. This time is known as “visitation” or “parenting time.” A common child custody arrangement involves one parent living in the family home and spending most of the day with the child. The other parent sees the child regularly at certain times of the week or every third weekend. This arrangement has a number of advantages but isn’t always the best option. 

Sole physical custody means that the child lives with one parent full-time. While the other parent may have visitation rights, this arrangement allows one parent to make the child’s decisions for the child. This type of child custody arrangement is often the result of child abuse or drug addiction. 

Visitation rights 

Visitation rights are the most common type of child custody arrangement. In most cases, the non-custodial parent will have unsupervised visits with the child, including overnights. Courts will establish a visitation schedule that the non-custodial parent can follow. This schedule is different from a reasonable amount of parenting time, which is determined by the parents. In some states, the non-custodial parent can ask for enforcement of the schedule. 

If you wish to change your visitation order, you should first consult your child’s best interest. The court will only consider a petition if the current order does not meet the needs of the child. The order will last until the child turns 18 or emancipates. The child’s circumstances may change in the future, so a parent or child can file a petition for a modification. If the changes aren’t material, however, the court may not reconsider the custody order. 

Changes in the custody schedule 

The first thing that you should do if you want to make changes in your child custody schedule is to make sure that you are considering your child’s age. A toddler’s needs are very different than those of a high schooler. Also, a child’s needs may change with time, especially if the child is disabled. 

A custody schedule works best when both parents maintain it. Ideally, both parents would spend at least the same number of total hours with the children each month. If this is impossible, a modification of the order must be sought through the court. 

Enforcement of custody order 

There are a number of different ways to enforce your child custody order. If you don’t feel like your ex is respecting your agreement, you can contact the police and report them for violations. If your ex is consistently late or doesn’t show up at all, this could be a sign of an issue. You should also keep a working journal to keep track of any visitation problems. This way, you’ll be able to show the court a timeline of the events. Whether your ex is late or has snuck the kids out of state, you need to document everything for your own court case. But always remember, your children’s safety should always come first. 

If your ex has repeatedly violated your custody order, you can file an enforcement petition with the family court. Remember that you need to provide clear evidence to convince the court that your ex is ignoring your order. If you are able to provide such evidence, you can ask for more make-up visits or even jail the other parent. However, you must keep in mind that jail time is only appropriate for severe cases.