PLEASE NOTE: our office remains open and available to serve you during the COVID-19 crisis. We are offering our clients the ability to meet with us via video or via telephone. We are also available for court in the limited instances when the court is allowing hearings. Please call our office to discuss your options.

Martin A. Tetreault, P.A.

Family law representation in Smithfield, North Carolina


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Child Custody And Visitation

If you have children with your spouse, you may have a good deal of confusion and anxiety about how your relationship with your children will change after the divorce. Who will they live with? Will you have any say in their upbringing? Will you get to see them at all? These are essential questions that a lawyer can help resolve as a part of a divorce settlement. While some couples are able to work out the details of such arrangements on their own, often the courts will intervene on points where the parents don’t agree. To learn your rights and responsibilities regarding your children in the context of your divorce, call Martin A. Tetreault, P.A., at 919-912-2270. You can also email our Smithfield, North Carolina, office using our online intake form.

Legal Vs. Physical Custody

There are two aspects to child custody in the wake of a divorce. Physical custody refers to the practical arrangements concerning where your children will live. Physical custody can be either joint or sole, meaning the children could live with both parents or just with one. Legal custody, on the other hand, refers to a parent’s right to make decisions about a child’s upbringing. This could include having input on such decisions involving:

  • School
  • Church
  • Discipline
  • Diet
  • Participation in sports

Many parents also create a parenting plan document as a part of a custody agreement. A parenting plan outlines in detail the expectations and ground rules of a custody and/or visitation plan, so that parents can avoid conflict and work together for the best interests of their children.

In general, a court will take into consideration the best interests of the children when making decisions about custody and visitation plans. However, there is no universally accepted standard regarding what constitutes a child’s best interests. Each case must be determined individually.

Look Out For Your Children And Yourself

Protect your rights and your relationship with your children as you navigate your divorce. At Martin A. Tetreault, P.A., we can help. Call 919-912-2270 or contact us online to consult with an attorney and get a professional perspective on what custody and visitation arrangement might work best in your situation.