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How can child custody cases differ from each other?

Child custody cases are often contentious because both parents likely want to spend as much time as they can with a child. Each parent likely has his or her own ideas about how the child should be reared. There really isn't such a thing as a standard child custody case because every child custody case involves family dynamics and the child's needs.

What is the primary concern during a child custody case?

The primary concern during any child custody case is the best interest of the child. While the adults in the case might feel like they are battling against each other, they are usually trying to reach the same goal of ensuring the child has everything he or she needs to live a happy, healthy life.

Are parents the only parties who might be involved in a child custody case?

Child custody cases aren't always between the child's parents. In some cases, other parties, such as grandparents or family members might seek custody of a child. While this isn't a common occurrence, it is possible if the third-party thinks that the parents are unfit and can meet certain requirements that are set forth by the court.

How are child custody cases different for unmarried parents?

In many instances, child custody issues and procedures for unmarried parents are the same as those for married parents who are seeking a divorce. The main difference is that the father might find it difficult to get the court to take the child away from the mother unless the mother is an unfit parent. Still, the father can fight for some form of visitation and custody.

It is imperative that you understand all your rights and responsibilities if you are in the midst of a child custody case. Understanding those points, as well as your options at each turn of the case, can help you make decisions about your side of the case.

Source: FindLaw, "Custody and Visitation in Non-Divorce Cases," accessed Oct. 27, 2015

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