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Child Custody in Times of Coronavirus

Updated: Jun 29, 2020

At the start of the global coronavirus pandemic, there was much uncertainty and fear amongst parents. Most parents were able tocome to mutual agreements about how they will proceed with theircustodial arrangementsduring the Govenors stay at home orders. While some came to agreements,others fought about what should be done during the pandemic. According to a recent article in theWall Street Journal, highlights the differences in how divorced couples are navigating joint custody oftheir children right now. The fear surrounding the pandemic can make it difficult to determine whatthe best course of action is. However what is most important for young children is to know that theyare loved by both parents. That’s why to the extent possible, parents should worktogethertocontinue their prior orders of visitation and custody.In these unprecedented times, parents need to use common sense and compassion to work towardswhat is best for their children. In the scenario in which parents cannot come to a mutually agreeableagreement, the courts are accepting emergency applications to resolve these issues. The best advice,from an experienced family attorney: just abide the orders and work together to ensure as muchnormalcy for your children as can be possible at this time.For parents who are struggling with custody issues right now, I'd remind parents that when Judgesmake final custody determinations, they will consider the parents decisions during this pandemic.Parents who are granted custody must demonstrate that they do everything they can to encourage therelationship between the child and the other parent. Children need to feelthe love and support of bothparents while they are dealing with these scary times.The statewide coordinatingmatrimonialJudge Jeffrey Sunshine wrote anop-edto parents about theiractions and decisions during this pandemic.

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