How is child custody decided?

Ideally, you and your partner will be able to work out a child custody agreement as part of your separation or divorce agreement. If the court is left to decide, they will make the decision based on the best interests of the children involved. Your state will have specific guidelines designed to help determine custody, but in general, children are best served when they have time with both parents. If you both agree on where the children should live, who should care for them, and how often they should visit the non-custodial parent, then this information can be included in your divorce settlement agreement and eventually merged into your divorce decree.

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