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What Rights Do Divorcing Parents Have? Answers To Common Questions

At Thelen & Associates, LLC, we know you have many questions about your rights and obligations to your children after your divorce. Here are some common concerns and explanations. For specific answers to your own issues, call 262-955-8241 to speak with attorney Kris Thelen or a member of our team.

What factors does Wisconsin law use in making these custody determinations?

If you and your partner were never married, it’s important to establish paternity. After that, in most cases, parents are allowed to work with their attorneys to create parenting plans (when each parent sees and has responsibility for the child) and custody plans (with which parent the child lives and which parents make which decisions for the child). Parents are sometimes able to come to an agreement and put it in writing outside court. If the plan is in the best interest of the children, it is likely the court will approve it. Mediation is a process that works for couples who are not contentious. Parenting time and custody agreements are often created in mediation sessions.

Do both mothers and fathers have equal rights?

Children benefit from both of their parents being active in their lives. No longer does a mother automatically get sole custody or more time with the children. These days, joint custody is common. Each parent has a right and a responsibility to spend meaningful time with their children (this used to be called “visitation”). Every divorce is different. These days, parents often have jobs or lifestyles that require custom placement and custody plans. Plans can be created and then agreed upon by both parents in mediation.

What role does mediation play in resolving custody and parenting issues?

Mediation is a form of alternative dispute resolution (ADR). For couples who are divorcing amicably (with little or no fighting or disagreement) mediation is often the route that works best. In mediation, parents work together with their attorneys to create parenting time and placement (custody) plans that work for everyone. Most parents prefer to create their own plans as opposed to being given a plan by a judge or court. Many couples find that the mediation process, because they work together, is less stressful for children and gives relationships a better chance to heal. Moving forward, this means that parents can often be more effective co-parenting partners. Mediation for custody and placement is required for all cases where there is no agreement.

What if there are allegations of domestic violence?

Domestic violence in a relationship can affect the way a case is undertaken (for example, mediation may not be a good choice for couples with a history of violence). If one parent has a history of violence, abuse or neglect, this can also affect placement and custody. Parents must follow court orders. Therefore, if the court order states that a parent has placement, then the other parent needs to make sure to follow that. If one parent feels the children are unsafe with the other parent, then the concerned parent needs to ask the court to change the placement order. This is done typically with the help of their attorney.

The Answers You Need To Move Forward

At Thelen & Associates, LLC, in Waukesha, we know you want the best for your children. You also want to move forward. We are here to help. We will answer your questions and let you know what your options are and how we can help. We provide assistance in both traditional litigation and mediation. Call 262-955-8241 or reach out via website connect email so that we can be in touch with you.