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Divorce Home » Child Custody » Types of Child Custody

Sole Child Custody


Many state courts favor joint child custody, but some divorce courts may choose to award sole physical and legal custody to one parent and child visitation to the other parent in divorce. Another child custody option is when one parent might be awarded sole physical custody but shares joint legal custody. Both parents are entitled to make decisions regarding the child's upbringing, but the custodial parent is responsible for making the day-to-day decisions in the child’s life.

Sole Physical and Legal Custody

  • Physical Child Custody

    The child lives with one parent exclusively, although child visitation rights may be given to the noncustodial parent.
  • Legal Child Custody

    One parent has the exclusive responsibility and right to make major decisions in raising the child, including those regarding education, religion and medical treatment.

Sole Child Custody and Child Support

Child support in every state is determined by child support guidelines, although these guidelines vary from state to state. The amount of child support is typically based on the income of one or both parents and takes into account expenses for the child. Child support is generally adjusted to account for the amount of time that a child spends with each parent.

Speak with a Divorce Attorney about Sole Child Custody

Work with a local divorce lawyer to learn how your state's custody laws may affect your case. Get advice on how joint and sole custody will work for you and your ex-spouse. Schedule a preliminary consultation with a divorce attorney near you by calling 877-349-1310 or filling out a divorce case review form. If your child custody case doesn't involve divorce, Total Divorce can still help you find a local attorney in the area that practices family law to answer your questions and give you legal advice.

Case Evaluation

The above synopsis of child custody is by no means all-inclusive and is not intended to provide legal advice. These laws may have changed since our last update and there may additional laws that apply in your situation. For the latest information on divorce laws, please contact a local divorce lawyer in your area.