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We Help Ottawa County Residents Fight for the Right to Raise Their Children

When Michigan parents divorce or are otherwise unmarried and not living together, child custody becomes a matter for the courts. Ideally, the parents can agree on major questions such as who the child will live with and where they will attend school. But when there is disagreement, an Ottawa County judge will need to step in and decide what is in the best interests of the child.

Kraayeveld Family Law is a full-service child custody law firm serving clients in Jenison and throughout Georgetown Charter Township. We understand that child custody is an emotional issue for everyone involved. And we know that you only want to do right by your kids. That is why our attorneys can assist you throughout the process of resolving any custody dispute so you can focus on caring for your kids and not the legal process.

How Michigan Law Affects Child Custody Arrangements

When it comes to resolving child custody disputes in Jenison, Michigan courts apply the state’s child custody guidelines. Custody is not a matter of a parent “owning” their child. Rather, custody refers to with whom the child lives and who will make decisions for the child while they are still a minor. There are several types of child custody a court may approve:

  • Sole Legal Custody: This refers to a situation where one parent has the sole decision making authority regarding the children.
  • Sole Physical Custody. This refers to a situation where one parent provides the child’s day-to-day care for the majority of the days. Even in cases where one parent has sole custody, the court may grant the non-custodial parent visitation rights (known as parenting time in Michigan).
  • Joint Legal Custody: This is where both parents share decision-making authority but one parent still has physical custody. In other words, the child still lives with one parent most of the time, even though both parents must still agree on major decisions.
  • Joint Physical Custody: Conversely, the parents may share physical but not legal custody. In this scenario, the child lives with a parent during specified times of the year. For instance, the child may live with one parent during the school year and the other parent during vacations.

Michigan courts strongly encourage parents to reach their own agreements with respect to child custody. If this is not possible, a judge will look at several factors in determining what custody arrangements are in the best interests of the child. This may include asking the child about their preference if they are old enough to express one.

Speak with a Jenison, Michigan, Child Custody Lawyer Today

Kraayeveld Family Law can advise and represent you in any Michigan child custody matter. Whether you are getting a divorce or looking to enforce or appeal an existing custody order, we offer professional service to all of our clients. Call us today at 616-285-0808 or start a conversation with us online.