“Divorce or separation is not the end of a family. It is merely a reorganization.”
Following a separation or divorce, you will have important decisions to make concerning your children, such as child custody. When parents cannot agree on a custody arrangement following their separation it is left to the Court to decide. At Popovici Chouliareas, your child custody lawyer will address all of your options and will relentlessly fight for your rights.
The guiding principles in determining child custody are the best interest of the child. The Court may also look at parental capacity and ability. There are several different types of custody arrangements your child custody lawyer will discuss with you. These arrangements range from sole custody, with or without access rights, to joint or shared custody.
Contrary to popular belief, sole custody does not necessarily mean having your child 100% of the time. Sole custody is when a child spends over 60% of his or her time with one parent. Joint or shared custody may range anywhere from each parent alternating custody of their child for one week at a time (50%-50%), to a 60%-40% or 45%-55% split. Your child custody lawyer will work with you to help you determine which type of arrangement works best for your family.
It is important to remember that as parents, you have rights and responsibilities toward your child. Primary among these are to provide for your child’s education, feed them, see to their health and safety and choose his or her school.
While many parents fear losing decision-making ability after a separation, in Quebec parents continue to exercise parental authority even if they have separated; they usually continue to do so jointly in the case of shared custody and may continue to do so with some modifications if other custody arrangements are determined.
Your child custody lawyer will also discuss with you your rights and obligations towards child support. As a parent you have a financial responsibility toward your child which is determined by the use of forms and guidelines as set out by the government. Various factors may impact the determined amount such as income, number of children and residence of the payor.