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How are child custody disputes resolved in Nevada?

One of the main issues many divorcing spouses are faced with is child custody. Nevada residents would agree that most parents would like to spend an equal amount of time with their children. A recent article, written by a Family Court judge from another state, reviewed some of the factors that courts consider to determine child custody disagreements.

Some people are under the assumption that child custody automatically is awarded to the mother. This is not always the case anymore. Courts award custody based upon the best interests of the child, not the gender of the parent. During the process, judges may decide to award sole custody or joint custody. When the court orders joint custody, it establishes both parents as having custody and neither parent typically has the upper hand over the other.

In regard to sole custody, only one of the parents has custody of the child and is usually the ultimate decision maker on specified issues. Many parents may fear being designated the noncustodial parent due to the misconception that they will not have access to their child. Sole custody is not intended to take away any legal rights or interfere with the other parent’s time with the children.

When determining child custody, a court takes a number of factors into consideration, such as the child’s age, the overall health status of each parent and the relationship the child has with each parent. Sometimes, Nevada parents are able to reach a child custody agreement by simply sitting down with a mediator and working together to come to a responsible arrangement. Settling issues without entering the courtroom is not always possible, however, and litigation may be necessary in certain circumstances in order to ensure that the interests of any child affected by the proceedings comes first.

Source: eacourier.com, “From the Bench: A judge’s child custody decisions,” Judge Monica Stauffer, Aug. 7, 2013

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