Parenting Time, Child Custody, and the Fourth of July | What You Need to Know

There are few things more important for parents than spending time with their children, and in some cases, this is especially true on the holidays, such as the Fourth of July. Please continue reading and reach out to our knowledgeable Massachusetts family law attorneys to learn more about child custody and parenting time in the state. Here are some of the questions you may have:

What are the two types of child custody?

The two primary types of child custody are physical custody and legal custody. Physical custody refers to the parent with whom the child spends the majority of his or her time living with. However, legal custody, on the other hand, refers to whether a parent has the authority to make certain key life decisions on a child’s behalf, such as where he or she can go to school, the religion the child practices, and whether the child can receive certain types of medical care. In many cases, one parent has primary physical custody while both have shared legal custody, however, courts can determine physical or legal custody agreements based on several things, and there is no clear-cut, one-size-fits-all custody agreement.

How do courts determine who gets child custody?

Courts will consider a wide variety of factors when deciding on child custody and parenting time terms. Some of these factors are as follows:

  • The relationship your child has with you and your spouse
  • Whether there has ever been a substance abuse or domestic violence issue
  • Your child’s physical, educational, and emotional needs
  • Whether your child has any special needs
  • Your child’s schedule, and whether he or she plays sports or takes part in any extracurricular activities
  • Whether you or your spouse can meet your child’s standard of living
  • The stability of your child’s household

What should I do if I wish to change my parenting time agreement so I can see my child on certain holidays?

If you wish to change your parenting time agreement so you may spend time with your child on certain holidays, such as the Fourth of July, you should first simply ask your former spouse whether you may spend time with your child on a given holiday. If your spouse says no and you believe there has been a significant change in circumstances, such as you or your spouse has a new schedule that permits you to have your child on certain days, you may file a post-judgment modification, wherein you will ask the court to consider looking at your child custody agreement. Our experienced Massachusetts attorneys can help you do so.

Contact our experienced Massachusetts firm

For over 30 years, The Law Offices of Cynthia L. Hanley, P.C. has provided quality legal support and representation for clients in Bristol County and all of Massachusetts. Our firm’s experience eases the stress of clients while providing the legal services they deserve. If you need help through any family or divorce law matters, contact The Law Offices of Cynthia L. Hanley, P.C. for a consultation today.