Idaho Child Custody

Child Custody Attorneys in Idaho

Child Custody Attorneys in Idaho

Taylor Law & Mediation can help clients establish Idaho child custody and child support orders as well as help modify existing orders in any court in Idaho. Just like our online divorce services, we can handle all child custody, child support and modifications online, from anywhere in the state, country or world.

Child Custody in Idaho

There are two key things to know when discussing parenting/custody in the state of Idaho. First, the courts use the best interest of the child standard when making decisions and second, the court has a strong preference to award joint physical and legal custody to both parents, though joint custody does not always mean equal custody. 

What is the best interest of the children  standard?

The best interest of the children standard means that judges look at all relevant factors when making an Idaho child custody determination. These include the following factors by statue:

  • The wishes of the child’s parent or parents as to his or her custody;
  • The wishes of the child as to his or her custodian;
  • The interaction and interrelationship of the child with his or her parent or parents, and his or her siblings;
  • The child’s adjustment to his or her home, school, and community;
  • The character and circumstances of all individuals involved;
  • The need to promote continuity and stability in the life of the child; and
  • Domestic violence as defined in section 39-6303 Idaho Code, whether or not in the presence of the child.

What is joint legal custody in Idaho?

Legal custody refers to the ability to make decisions on behalf of your children. This includes where they go to school, where they receive medical care, and much more. Joint custody means that both parents share this responsibility. 

What is joint physical custody in Idaho?

Physical custody refers to which parent is currently exercising parenting time. Physical custody is which parent has care and control of the children. This is what is also known as parenting time. Joint physical custody means that both parenting have meaningful parenting time with their children, though joint custody does not necessarily mean equal parenting time with the children.

What is sole custody in Idaho?

Sole custody is when one parent has 100 percent legal or physical custody of a minor child. If a parent has sole legal custody of the child, that parent may make all the parenting decisions on behalf of the child. If the parent has sole physical custody of the child, that parent is the only parent who has parenting time with the child and the other parent has no such access to the child. 

What is joint custody in Idaho?

Joint custody is when both parents have shared legal custody and/or physical custody of their children. Joint just means shared custody, not necessarily equal custody. For example, joint physical custody would include parenting plans with shared 50/50 parenting time and parenting plans that call for the child to spend every other weekend with one parent and the remaining time with the other parent. 

What is the difference between legal and physical custody?

Legal custody refers to a parent’s ability to make decisions for the child, such as which school the child attends, where they receive medical care, where the child attends religious services, and more. Physical custody refers to which parent has physical control and care of the child, typically associated with which parents house the child is staying for the night. 

How long do children have to live in Idaho to file for child custody?

Generally speaking, while there are some exceptions, children must live in Idaho for a period of six months before you can file for child custody in Idaho.

At what age does a child get to pick which parent they live with in Idaho?

Idaho does not have a magic age children must reach to have a say in which parent they reside with. However, the best interest of the children standard does take into account the child’s wishes, but their wishes are just one of a number of factors that go into a judge’s decision. 

What is a parenting plan?

A parenting plan, which is also thought of a custody order, outlines when the child will be with each parent. This can include a regular parenting plan and account for holidays, three-day weekends, summer vacations and more.

What does the typical parenting plan look like in Idaho?

There isn’t a “typical” parenting plan in Idaho. Custody orders can be tailored to meet the circumstances of the individual parents and children. If both parents live in the same community or a reasonable travel distance, a 50/50 parenting plan could be appropriate. However, the work schedule of parents may not make this feasible. If the parents live outside a reasonable commute distance but still in the same geographical area, the children might reside with one parent during the school week and with the other parent every other weekend and summer/holiday time. If the parties live far apart, the children will likely spend the school year with one parent and time in the summer and during school breaks with the other parent.  

Do we have to follow the Idaho court custody order if we have another agreement?

No. Parents are free to make their own changes to their parenting plan or custody order as long as both parents agree to the change. If the parents disagree, they should follow the parenting plan or custody order. 

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