Blair & Vestigo, PC Family Law Attorneys 

- Sherwood, Oregon and Portland, Oregon

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Child Custody and Parenting Time in Oregon

Why should I be concerned about custody and parenting time?

If you are an unmarried or single parent, or you are married and contemplating divorce, a custody order can protect your parenting rights. A custody order will define who has physical and legal custody of your child. It can also include a money award for child support and healthcare coverage.

Many parents find themselves trying to establish a custody and support order after something has gone wrong. This can include the following situations:
  1. One parent is refusing to allow the other parent to see the child.
  2. Both parents originally agreed on who would be the primary caretaker, and now the other parent has changed their mind and is making demands.
  3. One parent was voluntarily paying child support and has now stopped.
  4. The parents disagree on which school or church the child should attend.
  5. The other parent is dangerous and the child needs to be protected from them.

What is the difference between custody and parenting time?

Cases that involve a determination of custody are generally resolved in two steps:
  1. Both parents either agree to joint custody or the court must award sole custody to one parent.
  2. A parenting time schedule is drafted and submitted to the court for approval.

An award of sole custody entitles one parent to make the primary care decisions regarding the child. An award of joint custody may entitle both parents to make the primary care decisions. Whether sole or joint custody is awarded is independent from a determination of parenting time.

Many parents mistakenly believe that joint custody means parenting time is split 50/50. Parents can share joint custody and have an uneven parenting time agreement. The amount of parenting time awarded will have a substantial effect on how often you see your child and how much money you will be ordered to pay in child support.

Can joint custody be ordered if I don't want it to be?

Oregon requires that both parents agree to a joint custody award. If both parents do not agree, the Court will award sole custody to one parent.

What is the process to establish custody?

A custody matter may come before the court in a number of different ways. The parties may request an award of custody during a divorce (dissolution), the parties may be unmarried and petition the court for custody, or the paternity of a child may be in dispute and custody is requested through a paternity petition.

After a petition is filed and served on the other party, the served party will have an opportunity to respond. After a response is filed, mediation and parenting classes are typically required. A parenting plan is drafted and proposed to the court.

How much child support will I be awarded?

Child support is based on a variety of factors including monthly income, child expenses, healthcare expenses and the amount of parenting time each parent has. There are times where even a parent with sole custody may end up paying child support to the other parent.

Blair & Vestigo, PC can assist you in establishing both a custody order and child support order. If you have more questions regarding child support, please see our page devoted to this issue.

What if I have more questions regarding custody issues?

If you have more questions regarding custody and parenting time please call our Sherwood office at 503-655-7199. We offer no-cost initial telephone consultations.

15922 SW 2nd St., Sherwood, OR 97140  |   (503) 655-7199 Office  |   (503) 655-7169 Fax  |   Email:   |   Sitemap

We offer Divorce, Custody, Estates, Wills, Auto Accident representation. See us on Thumbtack for additional details.

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