Serving as an active-duty service member does not restrict you from obtaining custody of your children. However, it is important to be honest and state that your career designation can make the process more complex. Given the demands of active service, it is essential to develop a plan that keeps the child's best interests in mind. Learn about some of the factors that can impact child custody.
Often, these cases only work out smoothly when each parent is committed to being an effective co-parent. Service in the military, again, does not impede a person's ability to be an active member in their child's life, but it also does not grant any special privileges either. If anything, it requires that the non-military parent be willing to work with your lifestyle.
For this reason, you must play nice. Let the other parent know just how important it is for you to also have custody of the child and be respectful in all communication. If you cannot communicate cordially, an attorney can step in as the communicator.
As a service member, you must have some flexibility regarding how visitation is split. The overall goal of a family court is to keep the best interests of the child in mind. If your duty station is not in the same area as the other parent's location, a judge may not be inclined to develop a custody agreement in which the child is required to transfer back and forth during the school year.
As a result, you might be able to keep things less complicated if you agree to a custody agreement that gives you complete care of your child whenever they are not in school, including periods during the school year, such as spring break.
Family Care Plan
If you operate within a military assignment that could lead to a potential deployment, you should also be prepared to complete a family care plan as part of the custody agreement. This document aims to plan out the details concerning your child's care if you are required to deploy while the child is in your custody.
This document details everything from who would pick up the child to who would provide financial support in your absence. Often, a judge will not even consider a custody agreement without completing this document.
If you are a service member, the importance of an attorney cannot be understated. Be sure you have someone who understands the law and is fighting to support you during this process.
Contact an attorney like Charles E. Craft, Attorney at Law to learn more.