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Las Vegas Child Custody Attorneys
The Las Vegas Child Custody Attorneys at Rosenblum Law Offices can help you with your child custody case. Whether you are seeking to establish your rights as a parent, modify a visitation schedule or change custody altogether, our experienced and aggressive custody lawyers can help.
Child Custody is legal and practical relationship between a parent and his or her child. Custody involves not only the amount of time a parent physical spends with his or her child (referred to as physical custody), but also involves a parent’s role in the decision making process for his or her child (legal custody) such as education decisions, medical decisions and sometimes financial decisions. Your Las Vegas Child Custody Attorney can help you convince the courts to make the right decision about your child’s future. Call us today to talk about your unique situation. (702) 433-2889.
How does the judge decide who gets Custody?
If you are involved in a custody dispute in Las Vegas, the court will consider the best interests of the child in making a custody determination. The Court may award custody in favor of one parent over another if the parent arguing for primary custody can present proof to the Child Custody Court that custody should be changed in their favor and it is in the best interests of the child.
In determining the best interest of the child, the court will consider, among other things:
The wishes of the child if the child is of sufficient age and capacity to form an intelligent preference as to custody;
Any nomination by a parent or a guardian for the child;
Whether there is any conflict between the parents, and what level of conflict that might be;
The parents’ ability to cooperate to meet their child’s needs;
Any mental or physical health issues relating to the parents;
The emotional, developmental, and physical needs of the child;
The child’s relationship with each parent;
The need for a child to maintain relationships with siblings;
Any history of abuse or neglect for the child or one of his or her siblings;
Whether either parent or any other person seeking custody has engaged in an act of domestic violence against the child, a parent of the child or any other person residing with the child. A finding of domestic violence creates a presumption that sole or joint custody of the child by the perpetrator of the domestic violence is not in the best interest of the child.
What is the difference between sole custody, primary custody and joint custody?
In a Las Vegas custody dispute, sole custody means you have the sole decision making authority for your child and you have your physical custody of your child 100% of the time. It is very rare for a Court to award a parent sole custody.
Primary physical custody means that your child spends more than 60% of the time with you. Most of the time this means that the child will attend school in your school zone and you will be responsible for the day-to-day decision making for your child. Primary custody also changes the way child support is calculated and allows you as the primary custodian to relocate easier than if you had joint.
Parents who have joint physical custody usually see the child equal time or at least 60/40 time split. Child support is calculated differently for parents with join physical custody than when a parent has primary physical custody.
In almost every child custody case, parents are awarded joint legal custody in Nevada. When parents share joint legal custody, both parents may have access to the child’s school records, health records and religious training. Joint legal custody means that parents must share certain information about their child and cooperate in certain circumstances such as obtaining psychiatric care for a child.
What happens if I am not married to the other parent? Do I still have custody rights?
As long as your parental rights have not been terminated, and you have not relinquished your parental rights, you still have a Constitutional right to parent your child. This means even if you were never married to the other parent, you still have a right to have a legal and physical relationship with your child.
If you decide to pursue a child custody case in court, the judge will not consider your marital status to the other parent in the ultimate custody decision. Stated another way, the fact that you are not married to the other parent cannot be used against in the final decision about who will have custody of the child. Instead, the Court will use the best interest factors stated above.
For more information about establishing your custody rights, if you are not married to the other parent, check out our article Custody Rights For Unmarried Parents.
Should I just ask for week on/week off visits? I want equal time with my child.
Most people believe that in order to have joint physical custody, you need to have equal time or 50/50 time with your child. This is a common mistake in Nevada child custody cases.
In Nevada, you can be considered a joint physical custodian for your child if you share at least 67.5 days a week or approximately 140+ days a year with your child in your care. Basically, Nevada considers schedules of 60/40 to be joint custody. And, we don’t count hours either.
Rather, the Court will look at the quality of time you have with your child in deciding whether you should be considered a joint physical custodian. For example, if your child spends the night with but is sleeping the whole time, it is possible the judge may not award you joint custody. On the other hand, if you have your child every day after school but no overnights you could be considered a joint physical custodian. It comes down to quality time and not necessarily quantity. . . but quantity counts too.
Because each child custody case is specific, we strongly consider what will work for you and your family and your child when deciding on a schedule. If you have to work every weekend, it might be better to consider a schedule where you have the child during the week and the other parent has weekend time. If your days off change every month, a rotating schedule might be a better fit.
To be frank, there are probably as many variations of custody schedules as there are families. What might work for someone else may not work for you. Having an experienced Las Vegas child custody attorney on your side, can help find a schedule that works for you and your child.
Will I get to see my child for Christmas and Easter? Or other important holidays? Who decides?
Holidays, vacation time and other special times are extremely important in child custody cases and should not be considered lightly. Just like a regular custody schedule, the holiday, vacation and special time schedule should be specific to you and your family and your child. If Easter is really important you should include Easter in any holiday schedule, but if you don’t celebrate Easter, finding a holiday schedule that doesn’t include this holiday might be more important to you.
Once again, this is where an experienced and knowledgeable child custody attorney can help. Talking through the important holidays and vacation times with your lawyer will help ensure you maximize your time with your child during the times of the year that are most important to you. It can also help avoid having to return to Court in the future to argue over special days.
In cases where parents can’t agree on holidays or vacation time, the judge will usually enter a generic order that addresses holidays and vacations. It has been our experience that these plans rarely consider a family’s traditions and only offer a cookie-cutter-approach to custody. To avoid this situation, we strongly suggest talking to a lawyer about your options for holiday visitation and vacation time.
Why should I hire a Child Custody Attorney?
The role of your Las Vegas child custody attorney is to help you present the facts to the custody court, to speak the language of the custody court, and to get you the best possible outcome for the relationship between you and your child.
This is why it’s so essential to find the right custody attorney. You need somebody who has experience as well as compassion. You need someone who knows the law and the judges and can help craft a solid parenting plan that works.
At Rosenblum Law Offices, we have handled thousands of child custody cases. If you or someone you know has a custody related matter, our Las Vegas Child Custody Attorneys can help. Call us today at (702) 433-2889 or fill out our on-line form for more information.