Why is it difficult to get 50/50 custody in divorce?

Posted December 30th, 2022.

Categories: Child Custody.

child custody

The divorce process can be a tough time for everyone involved, especially a child. While the emotional and financial stress of a divorce can be extremely taxing for a couple, the impact it can have on a child can be just as damaging. The major changes that come when a marriage is dissolved can be very distressing for a child, particularly when it comes to the matter of child custody.

Typically, both parents want to remain a part of their child’s life. Unfortunately, the manner in which some would want to be will not always be the case. Whenever a court makes a ruling regarding custody, the main concern will always be whatever is in the best interest of the child. Some parents try to push for 50/50 custody believing it is a fair compromise to ensure that they both get equal time with their child. However, most courts will decide against it due to the nature of how 50/50 custody functions and the negative effect it can have on a child’s emotional well-being. If you and your spouse are considering pursuing a divorce, get in touch with a New Jersey family law attorney from the Law Offices of Mark S. Guralnick to learn more about your next steps.

Why do courts rule against 50/50 custody in divorce?

When it comes to the matter of child custody, it can usually be broken down into physical custody, legal custody, sole custody, and joint custody. Legal custody determines which parent has the right to make important life decisions on behalf of their child, while physical custody determines which parent the child will primarily live with. If one parent is granted full responsibility for the child, that is considered sole custody, while joint custody would be when both parents have equal rights and responsibilities regarding their child’s well-being. Generally, joint legal custody is far easier to obtain than joint physical custody. Most courts will rule in favor of sole physical custody for one parent, with the condition of visitation rights for the other parent.

The reason courts often rule against 50/50 custody in a divorce is that the logistics to make it work can adversely affect a child’s sense of stability. Having a permanent home is usually better for a child’s mental health, which is something that 50/50 custody cannot provide. It should also be noted that in order for joint physical custody to operate smoothly, both parents must be able to work together. This can be difficult for parents going through a divorce, which is something that courts will take into account. Unless it can be demonstrated that both parents would have little to no issue maintaining healthy and consistent communication, the court will likely deny the arrangement.

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