Louisville Child Custody Lawyers
We Help Mothers & Fathers in Custody Disputes
If you are involved in a divorce, you may be concerned about what will happen to your child custody arrangement. At Hodge & Smither PLLC, our attorneys have helped thousands of families in Kentucky navigate the child custody process. We know what is at stake, and we are ready to help you too.
What Is Child Custody?
Child custody refers to the decision-making, parenting time, and physical care of a child in a divorce or marriage dissolution case. When parents cannot come to an agreement on child custody, the court will step in to make the decision.
There are two types of child custody:
- Legal custody – This refers to the right to make decisions about the upbringing of the child. This can include where the child will go to school and what medical treatment the child will receive.
- Physical custody – This refers to the time the child will spend with each parent.
How Is Child Custody Determined?
Courts will consider many factors when determining child custody, including:
- the parents' physical and mental health
- the parents' ability to provide a stable and nurturing home environment
- the child's preference, if the child is mature enough to express a preference
- each parent's ability to provide a stable home environment
- the parents' ability to provide economic support
- how the parents will share in the responsibilities of caring for the child
- where the child has lived before
- whether either parent has mistreated the child
- how capable each parent is of making decisions that are in the best interest of the child
- whether either parent has a history of domestic violence
Note: Courts are prohibited from basing custody decisions on a parent's gender.
Can I Change My Child Custody Agreement?
Yes, you can ask the court to modify or change an existing custody agreement. To do so, you must prove that there has been a significant change in circumstances since the original custody order was issued.
Some circumstances that may qualify as a significant change include:
- Significantly changed circumstances in the child's environment
- A parent's significant health problems
- A parent's substance abuse
- A child's medical condition
How Long Does Child Custody Last?
Child custody orders are typically set for a period of time. However, parents can ask the court to modify the custody agreement at any time.
Parents should be prepared to present compelling reasons to the court to explain why the custody agreement should be modified.
Our Child Custody Lawyers Near You
Hodge & Smither PLLC is a boutique family law firm that handles all types of family law cases with care. We are committed to providing personalized legal services that are tailored to our clients' needs.