Child custody: How will it be determined?

When children are involved, the decision to divorce can become even more complicated. The responsible Arizona parent wants what is best for the children; however, the individual parents may not agree on the specific details here. One important detail that must be taken into consideration during the divorce process is how child custody will be handled.

Depending upon the age and maturity level of the children, the judge may take the children's preferences into consideration. In addition, the past history regarding who performed which responsibilities related to child care will likely be taken into consideration. For example, if one parent traditionally made sure that the children attended school, doctors' appointments, religious services and even extracurricular activities, this may play a part in the court's custody decision.

Each parent's ability to care for the children will also be taken into consideration. Physical and mental conditions that may be cause for concern will need to be addressed. Additionally, any dependence upon alcohol, drugs or other such substances will likely be taken into consideration. In addition to these issues related to the parents, any special needs that the child may present will need to be considered.

The primary goal in determining child custody is to make sure that the children are taken care of. Whenever possible, the Arizona court's desire will be for the parents to work together in at least this particular area and to provide opportunity for both parents to remain an active part of the children's lives. Sometimes such an arrangement is possible; other times it is not.

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