Shared Child Custody and Support: How Do You Find a Balance?

There are three key aspects when discussing custody of children. The first is legal custody. This refers to the parents’ rights to make decisions regarding the child’s well-being, religion and education. Though many courts favor joint legal custody, it is important for parents to know what this entails and to request this as part of any agreements as those who do not have a share in legal custody are not permitted to make important decisions in their child’s life. Physical custody and parenting time are the two other key elements of parenting agreements.

Joint or shared physical custody is usually in the best interest of a child as long as it is safe for the child. If parents are spending equal amounts of time with their child, then it likely they are already sharing the expenses. There are some who believe that parents should work out a system that allows them each to contribute to meeting the needs of their child without the need for excessive support payments.

It may be possible for some parents to come to an agreement in regard to paying their share of the expenses for a child. However, all too often, one parent is unable or unwilling to abide by an informal agreement. Kentucky parents who are ready to draft a suitable child custody and support plan may be best served by each consulting with a family law attorney who is experienced in drafting the plans that will best meet the needs of the child involved.