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Should you request sole custody?

Child custody arrangements are one of the most emotionally charged decisions parents must make during a divorce. Children want to be with both of their parents and vice versa.

However, there are some situations where joint custody may not be in the best interest of the child, and as a parent, you must make the decision to request sole custody.

Why would the court award sole custody?

Most family courts favor joint custody arrangements in which both parents share responsibility for their child’s upbringing because they believe this is in the child’s best interests. Children generally fare better when they maintain strong, positive relationships with both parents.

Children are also less likely to experience feelings of abandonment or loss, and having parental involvement helps maintain a sense of normalcy and security.

Still, there are times when the court may decide that one parent should have sole legal and physical custody of the child.

There may be concerns for the child’s safety if the other parent has a history of abusing or neglecting the child. Or the parent may be struggling with substance use issues and isn’t capable of providing a stable and safe environment.

Children need routine and consistency in their lives. Many times, one parent needs to move frequently due to work or life choices. They may also have shown themselves to be unreliable. Therefore, sole custody offers the child a more stable living situation.

There are several advantages to sole custody in these types of situations, such as:

  • One parent has the final say on all major decisions
  • It can provide a consistent and stable environment for the child
  • It can reduce parental conflicts and create a more peaceful environment

If you believe your child would be better off if you were granted sole custody, you should discuss the situation with someone who can provide valuable insight and help you file a petition with the court.