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Maryland child custody laws being studied by legal leaders


Maryland child custody laws can be difficult to navigate. One of the most frequently contentious issues in a divorce and its aftermath is the determination of what happens to the children. A Howard County child custody lawyer will face the gamut of issues linked to who will have the children in residence and how visitation will be structured.

A statewide discussion in Maryland is underway featuring many of the state's leaders in the legal field to try to improve Maryland child custody laws to better serve families. This group will meet to examine the manner in which judges apply the laws regarding custody and how they can be made fairer for everyone involved. For example, there is no clear-cut set of rules that a judge will follow when making a decision on child custody; instead, prior cases are utilized as a guideline. Factors involved in deciding which parent gets custody may include the ability to care for the children, the environment in the home, the history of the parents and what is in the best interests of the child.

One goal of the commission is to speed up the process and make it more efficient. Children can be negatively influenced by protracted and difficult custody battles between parents. These leaders are attempting to reduce the stress on the children and to help both parents feel as if they have received their just share of time with the children. They will also examine how accountable Maryland courts are if there is a need for the issuing of protective orders and how to better train judges to handle these circumstances.

Maryland child custody laws are in place to care for the children and provide the parents with the best possible opportunity to be involved with the children's lives. While a commission like this may provide some hope of improvements to the system in the future, today it is still wise for a person who has questions or concerns about this process to seek professional legal advice prior to moving forward in court.

Source: The Frederick News-Post, "Frederick County, Maryland attorneys to look at child custody changes," Danielle E. Gaines, Sept. 3, 2013

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