In Maryland, child custody cases establish the most suitable living environment for children. In divorce cases, a custody hearing is scheduled after a divorce trial, but parents have the right to seek custody at any time. A child custody law attorney in Frederick helps parents review their options.
Choosing the Type of Child Custody
The two primary types of child custody are joint or sole custody. Joint child custody gives both parents the right to make decisions about the child, and they split up parenting time. Sole custody gives only one parent the right to make decisions, and the noncustodial parent has supervised visitation.
Establishing Parenting Time
Parenting time is established by the parents if they agree to the terms. They have the option to split time equally if the parents live in the same city. If the parents cannot reach an agreement, the court makes the determination for them. The standard parenting time arrangement for joint child custody gives the noncustodial parent visitation on alternating weekends and equal time on holidays and summer vacation.
Introducing Risks to a Child
Addiction, alcoholism, and abuse are common risks identified in child custody cases. A parent that wants to introduce the risks in their custody case must follow certain protocols. They report the other parent to child protective services and law enforcement if the child faces an immediate risk. A home study is conducted by a social worker who reports their findings to the court.
Family Members Seeking Child Custody
Family members seek child custody when both parents are unfit. The same protocol mentioned above is required when filing a report. However, in some circumstances, the court provides emergency child custody. To get child custody, the family member must prove both parents are unfit to raise the child.
In Maryland, child custody cases are based on the most appropriate environment for the child. The arrangements determine who gets primary custody of the child and how often the child stays with each parent. Additionally, family members can seek custody if both parents are unfit. Parents who need to start a case can contact a child custody law attorney in Frederick and schedule an appointment right now.