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Is My Custody Schedule: Joint Physical Custody or Primary Physical Custody?

Posted by Gregory Gordon | Apr 21, 2020 | 0 Comments

Placing labels on custody schedules can be the most difficult and contentious aspect of a child custody dispute.  We know based upon Nevada law, that each parent must have physical custody of the child at least 40 percent of the time to constitute joint physical custody. If a parent does not have physical custody of the child at least 40 percent of the time, then the arrangement is one of primary physical custody with visitation.  But, how do we calculate 40 percent of the time?  What does 40 percent of the time really mean?  

This question is still being explored by judges and attorneys alike.  According to the Nevada Supreme Court, parents should calculate the time during which a party has physical custody of a child over one calendar year. Each parent must have physical custody of the child at least 40 percent of the time, which is 146 days per year. Calculating the timeshare over a one-year period allows you to consider weekly arrangements as well as any deviations from those arrangements such as emergencies, holidays, and summer vacation. In calculating the time during which a party has physical custody of the child, one should look at the number of days during which a party provided supervision of the child, the child resided with the party, and during which the party made the day-to-day decisions regarding the child. The district court should not focus on, for example, the exact number of hours the child was in the care of the parent, whether the child was sleeping, or whether the child was in the care of a third-party caregiver or spent time with a friend or relative during the period of time in question.

This is the only guidance that we have from our Nevada Supreme Court on this subject.  Based upon this information, and only this information, important decisions and calculations of time-shares must be made.  

If you have questions regarding how to calculate a particulate custodial time-share arrangement, or whether your time-share equals the 40 percent threshold, please contact attorney Gregory Gordon, Esq. today.  Mr. Gordon has nearly 26 years of experience handling family law (e.g. divorce, child custody, and support related) cases in Clark County, Las Vegas, and Henderson.

About the Author

Gregory Gordon

Mr. Gordon is a native of Las Vegas.  He has been handling all types of family law cases in Clark County, Nevada for the past 26 years.  He received his law degree from Pepperdine University School of Law, and he graduated magna cum laude in 1994.  After law school, Mr. Gordon began working as...

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