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Understanding Joint Physical Custody

Types Of Custody Joint Physical Custody

Divorce can be a difficult event in an individuals life. However, it is not uncommon for a child of a terminated marriage to undergo mental and emotional trauma. An ending of a marriage, is not the fault of the child, so the child should never end up the victim of a hostile divorce. Instead, the focus should be on finding a way to provide the child with as rich of a relationship with each parent as it would have been if the family was still intact. The factor that may affect your child the most, is the decision of physical custody. Although there is no fool-proof arrangement for what works best with each family, joint physical custody has many benefits and may be an option for consideration.

Joint physical custody means that both parents will have physical custody of the child. The child has the opportunity to spend significant amounts of time with each parent so that their parent-child dynamic will not be lost in the divorce.

Clinical and psychological studies have shown that children in joint physical custody arrangements had less behavior and emotional problems, had higher self-esteem, better family relations and school performance than children in sole custody arrangements. Also, these children were as well-adjusted as intact family children on the same measures. This type of information is relevant when making a decision to grant joint physical custody and such data will not be lost on the judge.


In most cases, the only blameless individual involved in a divorce is a child. Because of this, they deserve to have each parent fully consider the benefits and consequences of each action. Although a divorce is never easy for a child to accept, it is in the best interest of the child for the parents to make the process as painless as possible and this can happen by implementing a physical custody schedule that will be conducive for the child.

NEXT: What is Sole Legal Custody

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