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Melissa A. Featherston

Details of new child custody laws in Missouri

With the recent passage of a new law in Missouri, parents may now have a better chance of securing equal parenting after a divorce. The child custody law, which has been signed by the governor, is said to bring comprehensive change to the way that courts determine child custody, only giving sole custody to one parent in rare circumstances. Lawmakers have applauded this passage, stating that the results will benefit both children and parents.

The law is designed to promote equal child custody between divorced parents. Studies have long shown that children benefit when they have regular access to both parents after a divorce. Equal or shared custody can provide a certain continuity of lifestyle that could help children navigate this time of transition.

Proponents have said that previous laws were outdated and did not always lead to solutions that were in the long-term best interests of the children. While co-parenting is beneficial for some families, it may not always be the best solution for a particular situation. A parent should speak with a knowledgeable family law attorney regarding how these new laws could affect their divorce proceedings or child custody dispute.

During a divorce, Missouri parents are often, and rightfully, most concerned with protecting the well-being of their children. This is not based on the emotions of the moment, but rather should focus on their future needs and continued stability. A case evaluation can determine what child custody options are available and how a parent can move forward with the most appropriate course of action. 

Source: www.clintoncountyleader.com, "State Rep. Jim Neely applauds Governor for signing HB 1550, to provide comprehensive change to family law", July 14, 2016

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