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Melissa A. Featherston

Is it possible to share child custody without conflict?

As Missouri parents know, divorce can be hardest on the youngest members of the family. Parents strive to shield their children from unnecessary conflict, but they may fear that it will be impossible to co-parent after the divorce is final. They may be encouraged to know that, despite complicated emotional issues between them, it is possible to effectively and peacefully share child custody.

At the heart of every peaceful post-divorce arrangement is a strategic, thoughtful, carefully drafted child custody order. It should be put together in a way that addresses every pertinent concern, including medical issues, any special needs and a comprehensive visitation schedule. Unique needs and factors should be considered, and a parent may work with his or her lawyer to negotiate these terms during the divorce.

In some cases, litigation may seem like the only possible solution to a custody dispute. While the court's main concern is to protect the best interests of the child, a judge does not know the children involved like the parents do. An agreement negotiated and settled directly between the parents can address the particular needs of the children, including the youngest members of the family.

Working on a child custody agreement is not always an easy task for a Missouri parent. With the right legal help, it is possible to navigate disputes and address concerns, all while protecting parental rights and the interests of the child. If a parent wishes to avoid custody litigation, a case evaluation can determine what legal options are available based on the details of the individual situation. 

Source: The Huffington Post, "Co-Parenting Post Divorce -- Turning Challenges Into Opportunities", Karen McMahon, June 21, 2016

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