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How can a military family set up custody arrangements?

Custody arrangements can be hard to set up when you're in the military and divorcing. You may not have a steady schedule, or you might find that your schedule doesn't line up well with your spouse's.

Being in the military should not have an impact on your ability to share time with your child, but there are some things to consider. For example, do you know what you'll do if you're suddenly deployed? What happens if you have to stay late during a drill or have meetings you weren't expecting? Preparing for contingencies is very important for military families, especially when the parents are divorced.

How can you prepare for the challenges of raising a child while also being active in the military?

One thing to begin with is to decide who has primary custody or if you'll share custody 50-50. If you are stateside now and live close to the other parent, sharing custody relatively equally is usually preferred by the courts. If you know dates when you will be unavailable, you should write them down and start working with your estranged spouse to determine whose care your child will be in during that time. You can, at the same time, map out what happens on school holidays, in the case of a sudden deployment and other circumstances that you could run into.

No matter who you are, it can be a challenge to build a custody schedule. Your attorney will work closely with you to talk about potential schedules that could work for you and your family in the future.

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