Understanding the Basics of “Split” Child Custody

Personal Injury Lawyer

If you have multiple children and are thinking about divorcing your spouse, you may have run across the phrase “split custody” while researching what your divorce process may potentially entail. It is important to understand that split custody and joint custody are not the same thing. Joint custody is a legal term used to define a legal arrangement whereby a child’s parents share legal and/or physical custody of that child. Split custody is a phrase commonly used to refer to an arrangement in which custody of siblings is divided between a set of parents. For example, one parent is granted custody of an older sibling while another parent is granted custody of a younger sibling.

Split custody is a relatively rare arrangement, simply because it is not often in a child’s best interests to live away from his or her siblings. However, there are certainly cases in which split custody makes sense and serves the best interests of all minor children affected by the arrangement. Nevertheless, it is not an approach to be embraced lightly. If you are interested in exploring what split custody might look like and/or whether it may be a viable legal option for your children, please consider reaching out to our firm today. We would be happy to advise you of your legal options after learning about your family’s unique circumstances.

When preparing for a consultation, it may be beneficial to ask yourself a few questions about the potential benefits and drawbacks of a split custody arrangement. For example, a court is going to want to understand why granting custody of one or more siblings to one parent and one or more siblings to the other parent is in the children’s best interests. Why do you believe that this arrangement might best serve your children’s interests? The more clearly you can articulate an answer to this question, the better we will be able to advise you of your options in this situation.

In addition, it may be helpful to ask yourself whether your children would be best served if you and your spouse retained joint legal custody of your siblings, even if each of you is opting to split physical custody of your kids. Joint legal custody will help to ensure that both of you retain important decision-making authority when it comes to your kids, even if they don’t live with you primarily.

Child Custody Assistance Is Available

If you are interested in exploring split custody as a potential option for your family post-divorce, please do not hesitate to reach out to a law firm. They have extensive experience in both complex and relatively straightforward child custody matters and would be happy to advise you of your legal options. If and when you decide to pursue a specific custody arrangement, a child custody lawyer in Austin, TX may either be able to assist you in realizing that vision or direct you to the best possible resources available given the details of your family’s unique circumstances.



Thanks to Gray & Becker, P.C. for their insight into family law and split child custody.