Child Custody and Educational Decisions

Young boy holding hands with his dad

Parenting involves many critical decisions that help guide our children toward having the lives we want them to have. We make these choices with the hope that the will become good, happy, and successful in their life’s pursuits. One of the big parts of a child’s development is their education.

It matters a great deal that children are placed into environments that best suit their social, emotional, and educational development. As parents, we want our kids to be in schools with good teachers, with resources, with a good reputation, and a strong community. Educational decisions are a big part of parenting, and many of us spend a great deal of time advocating for our children and involving ourselves in their educations. What happens to this decision-making ability when parents separate or divorce?

What is Legal Custody?

Naturally, parents often have differing opinions about what decisions are best for their children’s education. Everyone was raised differently and has developed different values about raising parenting. With all of the best intentions, this can result in arguments and disagreements. These conflicts become worse when parents separate or divorce.

Under Nevada’s child custody laws, parental rights fall under two distinct sets of rights, physical custody, and legal custody. Physical custody pertains to the child’s living arrangements, parent-child visitation, and access. Legal custody is the authority to make critical decisions about a child’s moral and spiritual upbringing, medical decisions, legal decisions, and their education. In addition to educational decisions, it includes parents’ ability to receive educational information about the children, including report cards, school records, meeting notices, and event notices.

Regardless of what type of physical custody arrangement is in place, the law presumes that it is in the best interest of children for their parents to share joint legal custody. This is a shared right to make decisions and to receive information about the child’s health, education, and events. However, if one parent can demonstrate by “clear and convincing evidence” that the other parent is unfit and that joint legal custody would not be in the child’s best interest, then that parent can be awarded sole legal custody, or sole decision making about certain issues.

Parents commonly reach agreements regarding the custody of their children. This helps to avoid messy and expensive court proceedings, and also provides a more peaceful solution for parents and children. A child custody agreement can explicitly define each parent’s decision-making authority, including the ability to make educational decisions and receive educational information. Significantly, an agreement can establish what steps parents can take to resolve their conflicts and disagreements about their children’s education.

Family Lawyers at Viloria, Oliphant, Oster & Aman L.L.P.

If you are trying to resolve issues relating to child custody or visitation, you should consult with an attorney to explore your rights. Viloria, Oliphant, Oster & Aman, L.L.P. is top tier law firm that offers family law representation to men and women in Reno. Our attorneys are passionate and dedicated when it comes to parents and their children and we have a track record of success. Let us help you. Call Viloria, Oliphant, Oster & Aman L.L.P. today at (775) 227-2280 to schedule a consultation or contact our office through our website.

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