Should your child live with the primary caretaker?

One thing that the courts consider when deciding how to divide child custody is who served as the primary caretaker for the children. This just means who provided the most daily care to the children when the couple was married.

Of course, there are many marriages where the caretaking is split equally between both parents. But there are also cases where one parent may be relatively uninvolved with all of these daily tasks and may not have bonded with the children in the same way. The court may err on the side of allowing the children to live with the primary caretaker more often because the children will be more comfortable that way.

It still helps to have both parents involved

It does make sense that the primary caregiver would continue in that role after a divorce. And it may be best for the children, who certainly didn’t choose to go through this divorce and who want to have the stability and safety that they experienced before.

However, studies have also found that children do tend to adjust better to life after divorce when they’re still involved with both parents. It’s better for the children to have a relationship with both parents, rather than just one or the other. This means that it’s unlikely that the primary caretaker would get sole custody. They may just get joint custody but with a greater than 50% share of that time.

As you can see, dividing custody isn’t always as easy as just splitting the time in half and moving forward. It’s important to know what is really in the children’s best interests and what legal steps to take to protect your parent-child relationship.