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What parents need to know about child custody in Kentucky

Raising a child is complicated, especially if you are in the middle of a divorce. It makes a difficult situation more challenging as you have to consider what you want to seek for custody arrangements and what works best for your kid.

It helps parents to understand the basics of child custody in Kentucky and who exactly may seek custody during a divorce proceeding.

Who typically gets custody?

Most couples assume mothers receive primary custody of children during a divorce. Despite popular belief, Kentucky courts default on joint custody during child custody cases. In Kentucky law, the court believes it is in the best interest of the child to have time with both parents where they can both make decisions for the child.

There are circumstances where sole custody may be granted to one parent – such as domestic violence and child abuse, but those rulings are rare in Kentucky.

Can grandparents receive rights to visitation?

In the rare cases of sole custody, the grandparents may be interested in visitation rights with their grandchild. In Kentucky, the grandparents may file a petition to establish visitation. Ultimately, it’s up to the courts to determine what is best for the child and how often the visitation may occur.

If the grandparents do receive rights to visitation, they still do not have the right to raise the child. The power of raising and decision-making for the child is for the primary parent, not the grandparents.

Can a child request live with one parent over another?

As stated previously, the Kentucky courts want joint custody as much as possible when it comes to raising a child. However, there may be a time when a child wants to live with one parent primarily or entirely.

The child can request the court at whatever age, but it’s up to the court to determine if the child is mature enough to make that decision and if it is in the child’s best interest to place them with a specific parent.

The most critical detail to understand about child custody cases is the courts play a significant role in the child’s future. If you are seeking sole custody of your child, you have to have a strong argument for why the courts should look beyond their default and award you with primary care.

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