In Kentucky, KRS 403.270 now mandates that the judge presumes joint custody is in the best interest of the children from the onset of any custody case. Legal custody means decision-making power over the significant decisions involving a child’s healthcare, spirituality, and education.
The rationale for joint custody is based upon the belief that each child needs the unique influence of both parents in their lives.
This rebuttable presumption can be overcome by evidence of domestic violence or proof that joint custody is not in the best interest of the child.
Once custody is determined, a parenting time for every week, including holiday time, should be determined. Parenting time is a schedule that the parties either agree to or the Judge will order so that the children have consistency in their lives. Kentucky law mandates that every case begins with the presumption that the children will benefit from an equal parenting time schedule.
It is important to take into consideration the age of the child, as younger children should see each parent very frequently. Older children may thrive by having less transitions. Each case has varying facts that can demand creative approaches in forming the schedule. The goal is to maximize quality time with both parents so that children are not deprived of strong bonds with their parents.
As former President of Fayette County Bar Family Law Section, I understand the ins and outs of Kentucky's family legal code and work to represent the interests of my clients across our Commonwealth. I believe the first step for any attorney is listening to their clients. A highly trained mediator, I use my experience and perspective to ensure your rights are protected and your desires are met.