Many aspects of day-to-day life abruptly change when one parent in a family files for divorce. All of a sudden, a child’s parents may live in separate households, which can create financial and practical challenges for the entire family. There will be more costs to cover with two separate households, and inevitably there will be disagreements about how the parents will share time with and responsibility for their children.
Whether the adults in the family sit down to negotiate a custody settlement on their own or turn to the courts for support during litigation, there will usually be some uncertainty about the final terms of their arrangement. For example, when someone has a demanding job, they may worry about how their career could affect the outcome of custody deliberations.
The best interests of the children should always be the key consideration in custody matters, and most courts prioritize keeping both parents involved with their children. Even so, those with unusual or stressful job situations may worry about their career affecting their custody rights.
Daily schedules are important
If a parent works a third-shift job, they might be too tired to be present for the kids during the day or to safely drive them places before or after school. Adults with unusual work schedules may have a more difficult time arranging for an equal share of parental responsibilities because of the restrictive schedule created by their employment.
Travel and overtime can have an impact too
Someone’s job might require that they routinely travel to other states or countries. Other times, someone’s work might require regular overtime on the weekends. The more hours someone puts in on the job and the more frequently their employment requires travel, the more likely it is that they cannot evenly share custody and may need to include terms for digital visitation or make-up parenting time in their parenting plan.
Parents trying to overcome challenges generated by their current employment arrangements will want to focus their arguments on their children’s interests rather than their own wishes. In some cases, they may need to accept an unfavorable initial order and prepare to go back to court later to request a modification that will grant them more time with their children. Ultimately, seeking legal guidance to better understand how employment and other personal factors might influence custody can help people more effectively negotiate and more realistically predict the outcome of custody proceedings in Connecticut.