Divorce Arkansas Custody

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Involvement of the children in a court case is one of the vital issues between couples. Often, it is seen that this issue cannot be resolved by the couples due to vast differences in the opinions. Therefore, decisions related to divorce custody in Arkansas are taken by the court and enforced on the parents by a court order.

According to the rules and regulations in this state, the judge aims for the best interests of the child. Usually, the result is one of the partners becomes eligible for the responsibility. Sometimes there is a situation, where both parents are unfit for taking care of the kid. In such a case, the judge appoints some other individual (Relative or friend) or an agency (for example, the Department of Human Services) for the sole guardianship or joint parental responsibility of the child.

Role of court in Arkansas Divorce Custody

The court ensures to carry out every necessary plan that will help the child to recover from the shock of separation. It is possible to decrease the emotional trauma that a person is undergoing during a dissolution of marriage. Initially, the court offers the parents to reach an agreement regarding the parenting plan. However, if the parents fail to do so, the court uses its own discretion to establish the court order.

The court never gives any importance to the sex of the parent. It only strives for the welfare of the family. Irrespective of legal age, if the children are of adequate age and ability to reason, the court listens to the preference mentioned by them regarding legal guardianship. The court speculates over the past and future roles of the spouses pertaining to any history of domestic violence. The financial status of any parent is not given any significance for allocation of parental rights and responsibilities. However, the mutual understanding between spouses and the possibility to form amicable relations in future are two important factors that are taken into account by the court.

Types of Divorce Custody in Arkansas

  • Physical custody: This deals with the place where the child will stay and with which parent he/she would live. Physical guardianship specifies the partner who should look after the daily requirements of the kid.
  • Legal custody: It deals with taking decisions pertaining to the educational and social aspects of the life of kids. For example, the partner possessing legal rights would decide the school and religious education for the kids.
  • Sole Guardianship: It is awarded under some special circumstances. If any of the spouses has been irresponsible to manage the duties pertaining to family, all rights will be awarded to the other one. In such case, visitation rights of the former partner are kept intact.
  • Shared parenting: This is the preferred method in many states. It is believed that this parenting plan is beneficial for the family. But, there are various factors that the court may study to take such decision.

Can a grandparent get child custody?

Apart from the parents, any individual or institution is counted as a third party during the court proceeding. The grandparent has the right to file for rights over the grandson or granddaughter and be heard in any guardianship proceeding. However, the following two conditions must be fulfilled.

  • The grandparent must be the primary caretaker and financial supporter of the child.
  • If legal custody is awarded to the grandparent it must result in the child's improvement from its present conditions.
Arkansas Code, Title 9, Chapters 13-101 is related to this topic and mentions the following points:

A grandparent who has a grandchild 12 months of age or younger is eligible for notice and an opportunity to be heard in a dissolution proceeding. In this case, the below mentioned conditions must be accomplished.

  • The kid must have lived with the grandparent for minimum 6 continuous months before the first birthday.
  • When the granddaughter or grandson lived with the grandparent, this grandparent was the sole person responsible for the child's development and upbringing.
  • This continuous guardianship took place within 1 year prior to the date of initiation of a legal proceeding.

Divorce Custody in Arkansas and Unmarried Parents

If a child is born before the marriage of partners, the responsibility will automatically go to the mother. There should not be any alteration in this order, unless the court takes any other approach. If a biological father applies for guardianship in this case, he has to prove that he is able to provide financial and emotional support to a child. The court considers all possible factors while finalizing a decision in this manner.

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