A break-up is difficult for anyone, but it can be particularly hard on children. When a couple is no longer together, they often have a hard time coming to an agreement on how to best parent their children and share time with them — even though they both love them and want what is best for them. Paul Panico and his team can help you through this process, working out an agreement that protects both the children and your parental rights.  

Paul represents clients in central Ohio in child custody matters. He offers compassion and experience and works hard to find amicable solutions to difficult child custody cases. He knows that most parents do not want to have their child custody decided by a judge, and so he handles his cases with an eye towards reaching an agreement — and avoiding the cost, stress, and uncertainty of a trial.

Child Custody in the State

In Ohio, there are two types of custody. Physical custody is the time that a parent actually spends with the child or children. Legal custody is the ability to make decisions about how a child is raised, including deciding where a child goes to school, what religion they are raised in, how they are disciplined and more.  

Ohio law recognizes both joint and sole legal and physical custody. Joint custody, which is called shared custody in Ohio, is appropriate when the parents can cooperate with each other and where each parent is willing to encourage a relationship with the other parent.

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Child Custody Considerations

Like most other states, the primary consideration in Ohio child custody cases is the best interests of the child.  To figure out what the best interests of a child or children are, a court can look at all relevant factors.  This could include the wishes of the parents and the child or children if the kids have sufficient “reasoning ability” to state a preference. A court may also look at the child’s relationship with siblings and extended family, any history of abuse, and the relationship between the child and the parents. Ohio law does not give special preference to either mothers or fathers, and cases are not decided based on a parent’s financial status alone.  

For most parents, the prospect of a judge determining how often they will see their children is a frightening one. That is why the best solution to child custody disputes is usually one that is achieved outside of the courtroom. Paul Panico is adept at negotiating favorable child custody arrangements that protect the best interests of your children and your right to parent them as well.

However, there are cases in which coming to an agreement with your ex is not possible or safe.  This is true in a highly contentious case or where there is a history of mental, physical or sexual abuse.  In those situations, Paul will aggressively litigate your case and zealously advocate for your rights as a parent and the protection of your children.

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Child Custody Attorney in Columbus, Ohio

Child custody involves a high degree of emotion and requires an attorney who is both compassionate and highly skilled. Going to court is not always the best choice for parents who will need to work together and co-parent in the future, which is why Paul Panico encourages parents to reach custody agreements whenever possible. As a divorced father himself, Paul understands child custody cases on an intimate level, including the impact that a highly contentious dispute can have on children. Contact Paul today to learn more about how he can help you with your child custody case, and to schedule a free initial consultation.