When parents choose to get a divorce, or if the parties have never been married, one of the main issues to address will surround the custody of the children. Parents will need to decide who how custody will be allocated between parents, a visitation schedule will need to be implemented, who is to pay child support, and in some cases, paternity must be established if not already done so. There are two different types of custody when dealing with children. The first is legal custody, who makes the major decisions about issues such as education, health, medical care, and religion.

The second type is physical custody, which refers to where a child lives and which parent supervises the child’s day to day activities. Parents may share both legal and physical custody of a child, or one parent may be given sole legal or physical custody or both.

Child Custody Basics: Understanding Legal Principles In Massachusetts