What unique child custody decisions do high net worth individuals face in a divorce? Read this to find out…
Child custody cases go one of three ways:
- Smooth where both parents come up with a parenting plan;
- Some difficulty in the beginning, possibly even a court filing, but eventually a resolution that doesn’t require a court hearing; or
- Litigation that leaves the decision to the Judge or Court Attorney Referee.
For high net worth individuals, divorce planning goes a long way to increase the chances of 1 and limit 3. Absent high conflict cases, those that involve false allegations of abuse, parental gatekeeping or parental alienation, there is rarely an instance where taking the decisions away from the parents and leaving it to the judge is a great idea.
Here are a few child custody planning tips that are specific to divorce for high net worth individuals:
- Be realistic about your work and travel schedule. If your schedule varies too much from week to week or month to month, then you will need a lot of flexibility for things like make up time and maximizing time while you do have a fixed schedule.
- Be careful when deciding whether or not you want to move out. There are sometimes advantages to moving out and some can be financial. But there could be disadvantages too. Some parents are concerned about being falsely accused of domestic violence or are in danger. Others just want their peace. And some are told to move out and they have to decide what to do. Here is an article on the subject of divorce and moving out we think will put things into perspective. Solely on the issue of child custody (disregarding any financial considerations) a danger of moving out is that you “by operation of law” constitute your spouse as a “fit and proper custodial parent” making it difficult to win a contested custody case, should it develop.
- Get a custody and visitation stipulation and order (written agreement in the proper form that becomes an order) early in your divorce. Taking a negotiation posture that issues have to resolve globally (child support, spousal support, property issues) or not at all may expose you to sanctions (fees ordered against you) with the court. Just as important, it gives your spouse the opportunity to use financial issues as leverage in child custody negotiations.
TAKE SOME OF THE WORRY AWAY: All of this that I’ve just shared with you can be extremely intimidating and overwhelming which is why we offer a FREE Phone Consultation to ask questions and get clear on the things that will have the biggest impact in your case and situation.
The first step is to call (631) 543-3700 or fill in the form below this post and one of our senior partners will contact you as soon as they are available.