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Philadelphia Child Custody Attorneys

Understanding Child Custody in Pennsylvania

Child custody cases are often complex and emotionally charged. Pennsylvania, like many other states, applies the "best interests of the child" standard to determine appropriate custody arrangements. If you're involved in a child custody case, consulting an experienced Philadelphia child custody attorney is advisable.

Different Types of Child Custody in Philadelphia, PA

In Philadelphia, courts can award both legal and physical custody. Child custody cases often arise during divorces involving minor children but can also occur when unmarried parents separate or a biological parent seeks parental rights. Pennsylvania law identifies different types of custody as follows:

  1. Sole legal custody: One parent has exclusive legal custody and the right to make significant decisions on the child's behalf, including medical, religious, and educational choices.
  2. Shared legal custody: Both parents share legal custody and decision-making rights.
  3. Sole physical custody: One parent has exclusive physical custody, implying actual possession and control of the child.
  4. Shared physical custody: Both parents share physical custody, each having substantial periods with the child.

The term "partial physical custody" refers to one parent having physical custody for less than the majority of the time.

Determining Factors for Child Custody in Philadelphia

When deciding what's in the child's best interest for custody purposes, courts consider various factors, particularly emphasizing factors related to the child's safety. Some of these include:

  1. Which parent is likely to encourage continuous contact between the child and the other parent.
  2. History of child abuse or domestic violence.
  3. The child's relationship with siblings.
  4. The child's preference, provided it's well-reasoned based on the child's maturity and judgment.
  5. The parents' capacity to attend to the child's daily care needs.
  6. Proximity of the parents' residences.
  7. Existing conflict level between the parents.
  8. History of alcohol or drug abuse by either parent.
  9. Mental and physical health of the parties.

Additionally, the court may consider numerous other relevant factors listed in the statute or any other pertinent factors.

Engage a Child Custody Attorney in Philadelphia, PA

Facing a child custody case necessitates the expertise of an experienced Philadelphia child custody attorney. They can help navigate the complex legal terrain, ensuring the best outcome for you and your child. Call van der Veen, Hartshorn, Levin & Lindheim today at 215-402-5377 for a confidential consultation about your case.

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  • Unrivaled Record of SuccessWe have won tens of millions of dollars for injured victims, and have achieved countless "not guilty" verdicts for clients faced with criminal charges.
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  • Personalized RepresentationWe understand that every case is unique. Therefore, we tailor our approach based on the facts of the case and the needs of our client.
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  • Supporting the CommunityOur team engages in many community events and regularly donates time and resources to many charitable organizations in Philadelphia.

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Home to Philadelphia’s most accomplished attorneys, van der Veen, Hartshorn, Levin & Lindheim pairs diverse practice experience with a passion-driven, comprehensive law practice—all for the client’s benefit.

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