Eugene Child Custody Lawyer

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Eugene Child Custody Lawyer

Finding yourself facing the prospect of a child custody case is always difficult; the very nature of these cases means that emotions tend to be running high, and it is easy to feel overwhelmed and confused by the process. This is why you need a compassionate, qualified legal expert on hand, to help you navigate the complexities of child custody cases – and this is where we can help.

How Is Child Custody Decided?

As with the decision in other states, all custody and visitation issues are driven by the needs and best interests of the child or children in question. Where possible, siblings will be kept together, and there is no automatic preference for allocating custody to the mother or father. In some cases, the court may take the child’s preferences into consideration, but this will not automatically be followed – some courts will see this as forcing a child to choose between their parents, which is not in the child’s best interests.

There are two main types of custody that will need to be considered: legal and physical. Legal custody refers to the decisions made regarding a child’s upbringing, including medical care, education, and religious upbringing. Physical custody, on the other hand, refers to the place where the child will actually live – this tends to be with one parent, and the other is awarded visitation rights.

If both parents agree to joint custody, a court may award this, but this cannot be awarded without the consent of both parents. In most cases, custody will be established, and the other parent will be allocated a certain amount of visitation. When determining the custody and visitation, there are a number of factors that will be considered:

  • The social, emotional, and educational needs of the child
  • The ability of each spouse to provide adequate care for the child
  • The home environment of each spouse
  • The relationship that each child has with each parent
  • Any siblings that are also being considered

No matter the custody and visitation arrangements, both parents will generally always have the right to have full access to their child’s records, including medical, counseling, police, dental, and school records, and both will also have the ability to authorize any emergency medical care required for the child. Courts will also take time to consider any issues surrounding child support, any payment for uninsured medical expenses for any of the children, and any health insurance in place for children.


In the majority of cases, most parenting plans will prohibit the resident parent from relocating over 60 miles from the other parent, unless they have first informed the other parent and the court – this must be done a minimum of 30 to 60 days before the movie takes place. This time period is designed to ensure that the other parent has an opportunity to contest the relocation if they desire.

Substance Abuse

While substance abuse cannot be used as a contributing factor in divorce, it can play a key role in any child custody arrangement. If it is deemed that a child is likely to be at risk as a result of the substance abuse of one parent, then it is highly unlikely that that party will be granted custody. Illegal drugs, alcohol abuse, or other types of serious substance abuse will have a considerable impact on any child custody decisions, though it should be noted that casual alcohol or the use of marijuana on a recreational basis will be less frowned upon. If there is evidence of substance abuse, many courts will require the parent to enroll in treatment, regular screenings, and meetings such as Alcoholics Anonymous. It is likely that any visitation rights will rely on these steps.

Can Child Custody Arrangements be Changed?

Modifications can be made to existing child custody arrangements, and if both parents are in agreement, this is a simple process – the modifications simply need to be presented to the court, who are likely to approve them. If, however, one parent is requesting a modification and the other is in disagreement, then it is up to the parent requesting the change to prove why a modification would be in the best interests of the child – this will always be the primary concern of the court and judge.

Will I Have To Pay Child Support?

Oregon law states that both parents have a responsibility to ensure that the financial needs of any children are met, and this financial responsibility is maintained until the child turns 18 years of age – this is extended for the time that the child remains in an educational or training program.

Get In Touch

Navigating a custody battle is a complex and difficult situation, and that is why you need legal assistance on hand. Our Eugene Child Custody Attorneys will handle your case with grace and compassion, ensuring that you achieve the best possible outcome for yourself and your children. Get in touch today, and see how we can help you take the best next steps forward.

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