Each family in Connecticut is unique and no one besides the family really knows the dynamics inside the house. There may be outward appearances that seem similar to other families, but that does not mean every family is the same. How people parent their children varies, who earns the income varies, work schedules vary and therefore parental responsibilities vary.

Because each family handles their situations differently, if a couple ends up going through a divorce, the custody and parenting time orders will be unique to each family. Many people may wonder how these types of decisions are made though. In determining custody and parenting time, which is the time period when each parent will have the children in their care, the courts look at a number of factors to determine what is in the best interests of the children.

The factors used include, but are not limited to, the needs of the children and the ability of each parent to meet those needs; the children’s past relationship with each parent and any siblings they may have; the ability of each parent to be involved in the children’s lives; the parents willingness to keep the other parent involved in the children’s lives; any coercive behavior used by a parent in trying to persuade the children during the divorce; the length of time the children have been in their current environment; the children’s wishes, depending on their age; whether a parent has abused chemical substances; whether there is domestic violence in the home and many other factors.

As one can see custody and parenting time decisions in Connecticut are very fact specific and unique to each family’s situation. Ultimately though the decision is based on what is in the children’s best interest, not the parent’s best interest. If the parents disagree on what is in the children’s best interest, it can make these disputes very contentious and complicated. It is important to understand how these decisions are made though and consulting with an experienced attorney could be beneficial.