Custody is typically the hot button of any divorce that involves minor children. Because testifying in their parents’ divorce trail is inherently traumatic even for older teens, the courts encourage parents to work together to find a viable solution to all custody issues.
That can mean thinking outside of the box. But what if those thoughts include splitting the custody of the kids between both parents? Is that ever an acceptable choice?
How did you arrive at this solution?
Most (if not all) family law courts are going to want to see some strong arguments for splitting up siblings. After all, this is a primary relationship in their lives that is going to be forever altered by the decision.
However, that doesn’t mean that splitting custody is never a good idea. Below are some circumstances when it could be best for all parties:
- The kids don’t get along. This is far more serious than typical sibling rivalry and squabbling. Some brothers and sisters never managed to form a close bond and seem to feel only antipathy toward one another. Both may be happier when not under the same roof.
- An older child doesn’t want to leave their friends or school. One parent is moving to another state or even school district within North Carolina, but the older sibling is entrenched and engaged fully in their friendships and school activities. If they are a junior or senior in high school, they may lobby to stay full-time with the parent who remains in place.
- One sibling is diagnosed with significant mental or physical health conditions. A special needs child may not be able to adapt to two alternating living schedules. Also, it could be cost-prohibitive to duplicate the expensive medical devices and mobility aids (like Hoyer lifts) in two homes.
The above list is, of course, not all-inclusive. There can be many more legitimate reasons and circumstances to petition the court to split the kids in the custody arrangement. Reviewing all your options under the law is recommended in such cases.