Filing for Sole Custody


Couples filing for divorce in Pasadena often find themselves interested in celebrity breakups. The recent announcement that Katie Holmes is divorcing Tom Cruise after five years attracted a great deal of attention from the media because it was accompanied by the fact she is reportedly seeking full custody of daughter Suri.

In most cases, couples share custody of children from the marriage. The court generally believes it is in the best interest of the children to have a relationship with both of their parents. For example, Tom Cruise currently has joint custody of his children from his marriage to Nicole Kidman.

Physical custody refers to where the child will live. Legal custody refers to the ability to make important decisions on behalf of the child, such as seeking medical care or planning for educational needs. When a couple is described as having joint custody, there is an assumption that they are sharing both physical and legal custody. The term "shared custody" is just a synonym for joint custody.

Even in cases where couples do not share physical custody, they normally share legal custody of the child. For example, a father may opt to have the children live with their mother full-time because he has a demanding job that involves regular overnight travel and wouldn't be able to properly attend to the children. However, he would still have the legal right to participate in decisions about their upbringing.

It is very rare for courts to award sole custody. Typically, a parent has to be determined to be somehow unfit to care for the child's needs. For example, a parent suffering from a serious mental illness would not be able to make informed decisions regarding the care of a child. Any evidence of physical or emotional abuse would also be a reason for the court to award sole custody. These types of court proceedings are emotionally charged and require the assistance of a skilled Pasadena divorce lawyer.

For reasons of privacy, the details regarding Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise's divorce proceedings won't be made public knowledge. This is one case that Pasadena divorce attorneys will be watching carefully, however, since it appears to have the potential for a lengthy courtroom battle.