Under what circumstances is joint custody granted?

Me and my husband have split after only 3 months of marriage. He is demanding joint custody of our 1 year old son. He is in the army and away half the year; the other half he lives in another town. I do not want him him to have joint custody as even when he lived closer he never saw our son anyway and didn’t do anything with him or help me. He also has an ex-wife and a daughter he has sees just once a year because he has better things to do. What are the chances of him getting granted joint custody?

Asked on October 24, 2011 under Family Law, Alaska


S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

A court considers what is in the best interest of the child when determining custody.  There are two types of custody; physical and legal.  Physical custody means where the child is living.  Since your son is accustomed to living with you, the court is NOT going to grant physical custody to your husband; especially considering that your husband is in the military and is away several months per year.

Legal custody means making decisions about the child's education, healthcare, etc.  Although it is not possible to predict the outcome of a particular case, it is possible that the court might award joint legal custody.  This means that both you and your husband would be making decisions about your son's future education, healthcare, etc. 

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