These days, it’s not uncommon for both parents in a household to have their own careers. However, not all jobs allow you the same amount of flexibility and free time to spend with your kids. You may work 24-hour shifts in an emergency room or work night shifts as a bartender.
Could the unconventional working hours of your chosen profession inhibit your ability to get shared custody of your children, in the event of a divorce?
Children’s interests come first
It’s important to understand that when it comes to child custody, Washington family courts have one primary concern in mind: the best interest of the children. In the vast majority of cases, family court judges will assume that it is best for children to spend time with both parents. This means that the court will tend toward a shared custody agreement, unless there is evidence that one parent is unfit to care for their children.
Such evidence may include a history of drug or alcohol abuse, or incidents of domestic violence. It is not likely for a judge to deny you custody of your children because of your late-night work schedule. In fact, there is even evidence to suggest that parents who work night shifts are often more available for their children.
Flexible parenting schedules available
When working with your ex to agree on a parenting schedule, it’s important to understand that not all custody arrangements are the same. You have the ability to customize an agreement that accommodates your unique work schedule.
Of course, if you’re not on good terms with your ex, they may not be willing to work with you to tailor a parenting plan to your schedule. In such cases, your family lawyer can be especially valuable in advocating for your interests and negotiating the best arrangement possible.