New parenting trends, such as “bird-nesting,” minimize the change a child must go through after a divorce. For parents serving in the military, residency can change at a moment’s notice.

If you’re a divorcing military parent, this may be frightening. Now that your spouse won’t be packing up with you, do you need to sacrifice custody of your child?

Determining the child’s best interests

The courts will generally consider the child’s best interests to determine a custody arrangement in a military divorce. Whether or not a parent offers stability and consistency is a very important part of the child’s best interests.

Military parents may worry that their position limits them from providing consistency for their child. But, while a military parent may not be able to provide a consistent home, school and social group to their child, they may be able to provide better emotional, financial or parental stability.

An attorney can help you devise a strategy to show the court your strengths as a parent, despite your duties to this country.

Sharing custody after deployment

Despite where your duties may take you, the courts recognize that a child’s relationship with both parents is important. Special provisions may be granted to military members that detail the way custody and/or visitation will be handled if the military parent is deployed. For example, after being deployed, you and your ex-spouse may decide that you will receive more virtual parent time to connect with your child from afar.

You could even make a provision that allows the child to relocate with you. Civilian parents are not entitled to these changes and must ask permission of the court in order to relocate a child to another state.

Sorting out the best plan

Because custody agreements in military divorces are very complicated to conduct, gaining the help of a lawyer is the best way to sort out a suitable parenting plan.

With experience in the military to draw on, William H. Sams, Attorney at Law understand your position and are ready to help devise a plan that will work best for you and your child.

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