In Massachusetts what are the different aspects of “custody”?

Sue (Guest) on Saturday, September 08 2012, 09:56 AM
My husband and I have decided to divorce and are on good terms with one another. We’ve been figuring out finances and think that the kids and I will stay in our Greater Boston area home and see him on a scheduled basis. Can you please explain the different aspects of “custody”?
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    Replied by Attorney Amy Beth Baron on Saturday, September 08 2012, 10:08 AM · Hide · #1
    In Massachusetts, custody includes two parts, those being legal and physical. Legal custody is the right to make major decisions regarding the child including medical, educational and religious. Legal custody can be sole or shared. If you agree, as most parents do, that you are both good parents, then shared legal custody is appropriate. Physical custody is where the children will reside and who (which parent) will have the ultimate say in respect to their day to day life and schedule. In relation to physical custody, you may be considering a traditional parenting schedule where the children would reside with one parent while the other parent interacts with the children on a limited basis such as: once during the week and every other weekend. This is considered a sole or primary physical custody situation.

    If the children will have 2 homes (home with one parent and home with the other parent) and each parent will have “somewhat equal” parenting time, then a shared arrangement or shared physical custody as it would be referred to may be appropriate. This shared arrangement requires much cooperation between the parents and approval by the court.
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