With Arizona child custody, we have guidelines depending upon the age of the children. Also, the Court may consider the parent’s work schedule in determining what would be in the children’s best interest for child custody. A typical situation is one parent would be classified as the custodial parent, the understanding being that the custodial parent doesn’t give you any more legal rights this is simply a term which designates one parent as the residential parent where the child lives primarily. In a joint legal custody situation, each parent has to co-parent. You’re on the same playing field neither one has greater rights when it comes to decision making for your child.
Child custody can be an equal access schedule. This can be as simple as week on week off or a 5/2/2/5. A 5/2/2/5 schedule basically means that the children/child resides with the mother for five days and then go to the father for the next two days and back to the mother for two days and then the father again for five days. Sometimes parents will do alternating during the week. Monday/Tuesday with one parent Wednesday/Thursday with another parent and then every other weekend alternating. Basically that brings you to an equal access schedule.
Other times one parent is the primary parent and the other parent may get every other weekend and one or two nights a week. One or two nights can be both overnights or one overnight or simply a dinner. The Courts are very cognizant of our State Legislator’s insistence that there be frequent, continuous, significant contact between parents and the children. So, the longer the space or the difference between parenting time the more likely the Court is going to push it together. In other words, the Court is not going to want the children to be away from one parent for more than 3 or 4 days so that there’s ongoing contact to nurture the relationship between the non-residential parent and the children.]]>