Understanding the difference between joint custody or primary placement is very important when children are involved.

Joint Custody

Joint legal child custody means that both parties share legal custody of the child or children and that neither party’s legal custody rights are superior to the other. The judge will grant joint legal custody if he feels that the parties can communicate with one another well enough to make joint decisions regarding the child’s well being.  

Primary Physical Placement

If the judge feels that the parties cannot communicate with one another, then one spouse will be granted sole legal custody giving that spouse the authority to make all the major decisions regarding the child or children and the other spouse will have very little to say about it. Primary physical placement means that one parent has the right to have the child placed with them and the right to make all the routine daily decisions regarding the child.
Practically speaking, primary placement is very important because the parent that has primary physical placement of the child is not only the parent the child will actually live with, but also is the parent that receives child support.
For more information on child custody in Wisconsin, child custody legal advice, or to schedule an appointment , contact us for a free consultation.  John T. Fields & Associates serves Madison, Wisconsin and the surrounding area.