Louisiana Info

Louisiana Divorce Start Your Divorce Find Professionals Louisiana Articles Divorce Facts Divorce Grounds Residency Divorce Laws Mediation/Counseling Divorce Process Legal Separation Annulments Property Division Alimony Child Custody Child Support Divorce Forms Process Service Grandparent Rights Forum Louisiana Products Divorce by Parish

Louisiana Articles

Divorce/General SEE ALL

Info Categories

Contemplating Divorce Children & Divorce Divorce, Dollars & Debt Divorce Laws Divorce Process Divorce Negotiation SEE ALL

More Information

Articles Checklists Research Center Cases of Interest Dictionary Encyclopedia Encyclopedia (pop-up) Blogs

For Professionals

Advertise With Us Free Network Page Join Our Network Submit Articles Case Management Sign In

Network Sites

Louisiana Divorce Support Louisiana Divorce Online

Louisiana Child Custody
Child Custody in Louisiana

Louisiana Civil Code Articles 132 and 134 provides "[t]he court shall award custody to the parents jointly unless it is shown by clear and convincing evidence that custody to one parent would serve the best interest of the child. If the parents agree on custody the court will generally honor their agreement unless it is not in the best interest of the child."

In a divorce, Louisiana protects the best interests of the child. Louisiana family courts have jurisdiction over issues in child custody, support, and visitation rights. Except when it is not in the best interests of the child, Louisiana courts award custody based on the parents' wishes. Divorcing parents create a parenting plan the courts review. The court intervenes when the parents cannot agree on a parenting plan in the best interests of the child.

Custody can be either joint custody or single parent custody.

Louisiana courts encourage divorcing parents to amicably cooperate in an agreement on how they should raise their child. Cooperation reflects the parents' willingness to foster a continuing child-parent relationship and parental support after divorce. The court intervenes when a dispute arises, and it decides which parent is best qualified and whether or not joint custody is plausible. The court considers:

  • the child's wishes or preferences, provided, he or she is mature enough to make such claims, which is generally at the age of 12;
  • the family dynamics such as love and affection between the child and the other parties seeking custody;
  • the mental and physical health of the parties involved in the proceedings.
  • the amount of time the child has lived in a stable and supportive environment as well as the willingness of the parents in maintaining continuity of that desirable environment;
  • the parent's moral character;
  • any history of domestic violence or child abuse;
  • the child's adjustment to home, school, and community; and
  • the willingness and ability of each party involved to foster and encourage a desirable and continuing relationship between the child and the other party.

In summary, Louisiana child custody laws have set parameters for the court to resolve issues in custody. Either sole custody or joint custody can be reached unless a third party is suitable to be the child's custodian.

Mandatory Parenting Class

Louisiana courts have the right to require divorcing parents with minor children to complete a parenting class before granting a divorce. It is the Judge's discretion, so he or she may require you to take a parenting class. Whether or not you are required to do so, we highly recommend taking the Children In Between parenting class for the benefit of your child(ren).

Joint Custody Preference

Louisiana law expresses a preference for parents to share as equally as possible in the custody of a child in a divorce case. Louisiana prefers joint custody with parents sharing responsibility for raising the child. Joint custody ensures that the child will have a continuing, meaningful relationship with both parents. When joint custody is awarded, one parent is the primary custodian and the other is entitled to visitation, including several weeks during the summer, at least half of the holidays, and on alternating weekends.

Third Party Custody

In some cases, a third party, or someone other than a child's biological parents, tries to gain custody of a child. In some instances, the court awards custody to a third party. This happens when neither parent is capable of taking care of the child.

Parental Conduct

In addition to finding a parent unfit because of substance abuse or abuse or neglect towards a child, the courts also consider the conduct of both parents during the course of the marriage, and the impact of parental behavior on the child.

An abusive parent does not receive joint custody or sole custody. If both parents are abusive, the parent who has completed a treatment program and is the least likely to commit abuse again may be awarded custody. If possible, Louisiana prefers a parent to a third party custodian. The parent who was abusive in the past can be awarded custody after completion of a court-ordered treatment program.

Visitation

The Louisiana courts have full discretion when determining visitation between children and parents. The courts can establish visitation between one or more parent, even if both parents agreed upon a no-visitation policy. Under child custody laws, the non-custodial parent receives visitation rights unless the child's welfare is at risk with the visiting parent. Visitation by a non-parental relative, such as the child's grandparents, may be granted by the court provided these individuals have a quality and constructive relationship with the child.

Start Louisiana Divorce Start Your Louisiana Online Divorce Today
Easy, Fast and Affordable with a 100% Guarantee.
Louisiana Divorce Find Louisiana Divorce Professionals in Your Area:
Join the Network
Louisiana Divorce Products, Services and Solutions Louisiana Divorce Products, Services and Solutions
Louisiana Divorce Resources to Help You Through the Process.
Online Parenting Class Louisiana Mandatory Online Parenting Class
Easy and convenient - complete at your own pace online.
Divorce and Custody Books Discount Divorce Bookstore
Over 100 Titles of the Best Books on Divorce & Custody.
Divorce Downloads Divorce Download Center
Instantly Download, Books, Manuals, & Forms.
Divorce Worksheet Free Louisiana Divorce Worksheet & Separation Agreement
Your Guide to Get Organized and Put Everything in Writing.
Divorce Lawyers & Mediators
 

Find Professionals

Easily Connect With a Lawyer or Mediator
Have Divorce Professionals from Your Area Contact You!
Enter Your Zip Code:

 

Start Your Divorce File for a Louisiana Divorce

 

Settle Your Divorce Negotiate Your Louisiana Divorce

 

Support Forum Louisiana Support Forum

Children In Between - Online Parenting Class


FEATURED TOOL - Online Divorce Calendar (an ideal way to keep all of your divorce related issues private and well organized)

Guarantee Official PayPal Seal Facebook Twitter Versign Secure Site
Limited Offer Women's Rights Manual For Divorce
Cover Price: $55.95
Your Price: $29.95
You Save: $26.00

"The Absolute Best Investment in Your Divorce"

Men's Rights Manual For Divorce
Cover Price: $55.95
Your Price: $29.95
You Save: $26.00

"Uncover Your Options and Unleash Solutions"