If you're going through a divorce, one issue you may have to deal with is child custody. Who should you and your soon-to-be-ex partner's child live with? Who should be responsible for which aspects of his or her upbringing? Who should they spend more time with?
While, in a perfect world, you and the child's other parent will be able to answer these questions on your own, sometimes the court will need to step in and help you come to an agreement.
According to the Law Society of New South Wales, any decision the court comes to regarding child custody agreements will be made in the "best interests" of the child.
So, what are those "best interests"?
Unless there is some question of abuse or violence, the court will normally issue "formal parenting orders" that ensure a child gets to spend time with both parents.
In addition to this, the child's views (depending on their age and maturity) will be taken into account, as well as their relationship with both parents.
The "gender, maturity, lifestyle and cultural background" of the child and parents may also be considered, as will the ability of each parent to meet "all the child's needs, including intellectual and emotional needs," states the Law Society.
If you need advice on child custody agreements, the family lawyers at Craddock Murray Neumann can help.