Orange Child Custody Lawyer
When a family dynamic is changing and a parting couple files a suit for annulment or divorce, having children makes a difficult process more complicated. Regardless of the reason for the separation, when the separating parties have a child or children, it ensures that they remain involved in each other’s lives.
To increase the chances of reaching an agreement that gives both parents as much access to the child or children as possible, someone going through this process should contact an experienced Orange, CT child custody lawyer. While your future may not be exactly as planned, establishing a new normal with your changed family dynamic is imperative to all parties moving forward with their lives. A compassionate family law attorney can help to streamline the process.
If someone and their former spouse or partner cannot reach a custody arrangement, the court would be required to intervene and they would have to attend a custody hearing. When a judge has to make a custodial determination, they will base the decision on the best interest of the child.
In Connecticut, family courts are permitted to consider any factor that is believed to be relevant to a child’s best interests. Typically, greater weight is given to issues or factors that are directly related to the child’s safety. Many of the factors that the court considers when making custody decisions are focused on the child, such as the child’s need to be surrounded by friends, family, and usual social activities. Additionally, the court considers the child’s relationships with siblings and the child’s preference on which parent to live with, depending on their age.
The court does, however, also consider other factors that are focused on the parents. Those factors include, but are not limited to, the parents’ criminal history, whether either parent abused alcohol or drugs, and/or whether or not there is a history of physical or emotional abuse.
Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act
Once a child custody determination has been reached by the court, that determination is binding until the child is a legal adult, becomes emancipated, or the order is modified by the court in that state. To ensure that it is binding, Connecticut adopted the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJEA), which establishes jurisdiction over a child custody case in one state and protects the Connecticut court orders from modification in any other state, with few exceptions.
The UCCJEA ensures that a child custody arrangement that is made in court, cannot be modified in another state. As a result, the non-custodial parent is less likely to take the child to another state and petition a court in that state for a modification of an existing custody order that they believe will be more favorable. The UCCJEA also provides for continuing exclusive jurisdiction. If Connecticut has jurisdiction over a child custody dispute because it is the child’s home state and the child subsequently moves and establishes a new home state, jurisdiction can shift to the new home state.
Under the UCCJEA, jurisdiction would not shift from the original home state, if one of the parents remains there. Just as the non-custodial parent cannot relocate the child and petition a new court for a more favorable arrangement, a custodial parent cannot relocate with the child and petition a court in the new state after the fact for a modification of the child custody order.
Contacting an Orange Child Custody Attorney
If you are going through a divorce with children involved, do not hesitate to contact an Orange child custody lawyer. Your skilled attorney can assist you in finding the best possible solution for both you and your children.