If divorce is incapable of being avoided, issues
of child custody and access are bitter. When parents divorce custody of a child, only implies as to who the child will physically reside with. Parents continue to be natural guardians after divorce.
The custodial parent will be responsible for the medical and educational needs, emotional of the child and the non-custodial parent will have the right of access.
Over the years, there is a shift from custody and access being the right of a parent to being the ‘right of a child‘. The non-negotiable principle is best interest and welfare of the child. Who will best serve the needs of child’s is the only thing.
Custody does not determined by earning capacity of parents but the capacity to provide a safe and secure environment. A non-earning mother may get custody but the earn
ing father will be asked to provide child support. When the child is of a tender age, the mother is preferred custodial parent. When the child attains a discernible age, his desire is considered that with whom he/ she want to stay. At a particular age, the father shall have uncontested right is misplaced.
The best thing is child ought to in case of mutual divorce. Who will the child stay with, what will be the terms of access, how will the child’s living and educational needs met?
Both parents can also apply for joint custody. In this custody both parents have right of legal custody but one will have the physical custody and be the primary caretaker.
Access to the non-custodial parent may be daily or monthly. It may be just day access or overnight access, weekend and/or vacation, access on special days, may also be free access with no fixed schedule. For the convenience of parents and child custody may also include right to school for the non-custodial.
Every parent has responsibility towards their child. The parents can agree to pay either monthly to maintain life standard or at different stages of the child’s educati
onal life. A property can be given at the name of child, as rent can be used for
monthly maintenance expenses.
Mistrust that child’s money/ property could be misused by the custodial parent or that the non-custodial parent could abuse the terms of access alone.
The court is ultimate guardian of the child and her/his property and so minor’s property is protected by law and terms of custody, access and child support can be altered in changed situations and in the interest of the child.