Did you know that there is more than one type of living arrangement for kids whose parents have been divorced? Child custody looks different for different Florida families, based on the physical, financial and other needs of their members. Today, we will talk about the two main types of child custody that you may seek after your divorce.

What is physical custody? In most situations, we think of custody as the location where the child lives. However, there is a difference between physical and legal custody. Physical custody is the term that is used to describe the physical location of a child — that is, when the child lives with one parent and the other has only visitation rights. Joint physical custody may be awarded to parents who live close to each other, but this is not always guaranteed.

What about legal custody? If a parent has legal custody, it means that the adult is allowed to make decisions about the child’s future, education, upbringing and medical care. In many states, joint legal custody is a requirement, which means that parents must work together to make big decisions for their kids’ future. Parents may seek sole legal custody of their children if they believe that the other parent is making poor decisions for the kids.

What should I do if I need help with my custody arrangement? A qualified family law attorney can help you develop a custody arrangement that suits your needs and those of your children. A variety of physical, legal and joint custody arrangements are available to promote your kids’ success. Attorneys provide their family clients with the information they need to maximize the outcomes of their child custody cases.

Source: FindLaw, “The Various Types of Child Custody,” accessed Jan. 27, 2017