In Pennsylvania, couples who attended a divorce trial establish child custody during a separate hearing. The parents have the opportunity to present evidence showing why they are the more appropriate choice to receive child custody. A local attorney helps each parent by explaining Child Custody Law in Bethlehem PA.
Joint Child Custody
Joint child custody is an arrangement where each parent receives equal parenting time when possible. The child lives with one parent during the week and visits with the noncustodial parent on alternating weekends. Parents who live in the same area have the option to split parenting time more evenly. If each parent lives in the same school district, arrangements are made to allow the child to be dropped off after at school.
Sole Child Custody
Sole child custody isn’t awarded unless there is a risk to the child. Typically, the parent requesting sole custody must have evidence of the risk. The risks include but are not limited to domestic violence, drug or alcohol addiction, or a criminal lifestyle. Supervised visitation is often required with the child custody assignment.
Termination of Parental Rights
Parental rights are terminated when risk to the child is more severe. A parent that has been convicted of a crime related to the child such as sexual abuse, neglect, or other forms of abuse will lose their rights. The custodial parent has the right to file a motion to terminate their ex-spouse’s rights under the conditions. Once terminated, the parent doesn’t have any legal claim to the child. The court also assigns a protection order to prevent any contact with the child.
Grandparents Rights and Visitation
Grandparents have the right to petition the court to gain visitation rights. The parents must have a legitimate reason for denying visitation, or the grandparents receive visitation rights. Parents who try to reach an agreement must attend a hearing.
In Pennsylvania, couples attend a custody hearing when they can’t reach an agreement. A judge assesses the evidence presented on each side and makes a final decision. Child support payments are also calculated during the custody hearing. Parents who need more information about Child Custody Law in Bethlehem PA contact Erik Conrad Attorney right now.