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The Association of Divorce Financial Planners (ADFP) is registered with the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) as a sponsor of continuing professional education on the National Registry of CPE Sponsors. State boards of accountancy have final authority on the acceptance of individual courses for CPE credit. Complaints regarding registered sponsors may be addressed to the National Registry of CPE Sponsors, 150 Fourth Avenue North, Suite 700, Nashville, TN, 37219-2417. Web site: www.nasbatools.com.

Child Custody

The Basics of Child Custody: A child is easily the most vulnerable person involved throughout the emotional side of divorce. Although the prospect might sometimes be tempting, a parent should never ever use the child as a bargaining tool during the sometimes difficult negotiations. If the child becomes a pawn in this game of emotional chess, alterations must be made before situations become irreversible.

Jurisdiction and Child-Napping Issues: If a non-custodial parent snatches a child, at which time you are unable to or feel unsafe to go where he or she is living to retrieve the child, talk to your attorney and if need be file an immediate petition for contempt of court. This is "Child-napping," which is subject to severe penalties.

The Child's Bill of Rights: The judicial system in each state considers numerous factors in arriving at a final and proper child custody arrangement. After reviewing all of these factors, the Wisconsin Supreme Court devised a guideline for a child's rights. These basic rights are upheld in all 50 states.

Pre-Divorce Custody (Temporary Custody): At the time of separation, the temporary custody arrangements might very well be assumed by the two parents. However, it is essential that the issues related are thoroughly discussed in order to successfully reach a binding and lasting mutual agreement.

Deciding Who Should Get Custody?: Each parent needs to acknowledge the other's contributions made in rearing the child. It is important to give proper credit where credit is due. In short, nothing less than a positive atmosphere should prevail.

Common Factors Relevant to Custody Decisions: When negotiating child custody issues with your attorney keep in mind these factors that the judicial system takes into consideration.

Child Custody Evaluations: When custodial agreement cannot be reached between the two parties prior to the trial date, a great deal of preparation may be required by the client and the attorney in order to effectively petition the court for custodial rights.

Parenting is a Partnership: Look at your relationship as a business partnership. Address situations with business-like behavior. If at any time a conversation becomes a little too personal, it might be wise to continue it on a later date. Respect and encourage the child's relationship with the other parent.

Child Custody Frequently Asked Questions: When is my child declared independent? What if the wife is pregnant at the time of separation and divorce? Can custody rights change? These questions and more are answered.