Here are some answers that clients frequently ask me about child custody. These FAQs are provided for general information only and are not intended to be relied upon as legal advice. For a consultation, please contact us.
In Pennsylvania, there are two general types of child custody: legal custody and physical custody.
Legal custody is the right of a parent to make decisions for the well-being of their child, such as medical, educational, religious, disciplinary, and social decisions. A court may award “sole” or “joint” legal custody.
Physical custody is the right to have physical control of the child.
A court may award a parent:
- Sole physical custody (where the child spends all of their time with one parent),
- Primary physical custody (where the child spends the majority of their time with the “custodial parent”),
- Partial physical custody (where a child spends less than 50% of their time with the parent, usually at designated times, such as weekends and holidays), or
- Visitation (where a parent may visit with his/her child, under the supervision of the custodial parent or a third party).