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What is the Difference Between Legal Custody and Physical Custody?

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

Custody entails both legal and physical custody.  What is the difference between legal custody and physical custody?  How is legal custody different from physical custody?
 
Legal custody involves having basic legal responsibility for a child and making major decisions regarding the child, including the child's health, education, and religious upbringing.  Sole legal custody vests this right with one parent, while joint legal custody vests this right with both parents.  Joint legal custody requires that the parents be able to cooperate, communicate, and compromise to act in the best interest of the child.  Joint legal custody can exist regardless of the physical custody arrangements of the parties.

Physical custody involves the time that a child physically spends in the care of a parent, e.g. the custody schedule.  During this time, the child resides with the parent and that parent provides supervision for the child and makes the day-to-day decisions regarding the child.  In Nevada, parents can share joint physical custody, or one parent may have primary physical custody while the other parent may have visitation rights.

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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