SHARED CUSTODY OF YOUR CHILD: A Practical Guide
by Clifford J. Petroske, Esq.
August 20, 2015
One of the primary concerns when a couple decides to separate is child custody. It’s difficult to envision not living with your children all the time, but it’s the reality of separate households. What post-separation parenting arrangement is best for your children? Consider shared custody.
Absent extraordinary circumstances such as an abusive or neglectful parent, studies show that children, even very young children, and even children of high-conflict parents, do best when they spend considerable amounts of time with each parent post-divorce.
In 2014, delegates from the scientific, family profession and civil society sectors of over twenty countries attended the First International Conference on Shared Parenting. Among their areas of consensus was the following conclusion:
The benefits of shared custody apply even to very young children, according to a recent consensus report by 110 child development experts entitled "Social Science and Parenting Plans for Young Children," published in the APA journal, Psychology, Public Policy and Law (Feb. 2014). The report concluded that
Knowing that shared parenting may be the best long-term option for your children’s development, how do you make it work for you? A few suggestions:
The bottom line: the standard that judges apply to custody determinations in New York is “the best interests of the child.” There are numerous factors involved, but above all you should be prepared to show that you are willing to put your children’s well-being above your own preferences, which may mean sharing a considerable amount of your children’s time with your ex, and your own time, too. Even though you decided to part ways, you will both always be connected by your children. It’s best for everyone if you share the responsibilities and the rewards of parenting.