What is the Primary Caretaker in a Custody Case?

In Arizona, child custody is called legal decision-making authority. While the name is different, the principles are the same. The courts designate one parent or both parents to have legal authority to make major decisions on their child’s behalf.  These include decisions for the children’s education, non-emergency medical needs, religious training, and personal care. Sometimes, there is a question of whether one of the parents will serve as the primary caretaker in a custody case and what that entails.

Understanding the Primary Caretaker Standard

Under ARS Section 25-403.07, the court might specify one parent as the primary caretaker of the child, and a single residence as the primary home under a parenting plan. This may be done because the court believes it to be in the child’s best interests or it may be simply due to a party requiring that designation for purposes of the receipt of public assistance.

The primary caretaker may be the one who cares for the child most of the day, handles the majority of the child’s routine needs, and so forth.  However, a primary caretaker does not have more legal decision-making rights as to consequential decisions than the non-primary caretaker unless the court’s order specifically states that that is the case.

Do You Feel Primary Caretaker Status is Appropriate in Your Case?

If you think you deserve primary caretaker status, or you wish to modify your existing authority arrangement, Udall Shumway, PLC can assist. Our family law attorneys understand the complexities of the new custody laws, and we can not only help you understand them but ensure your child receives the best arrangement possible.

Schedule a consultation now to meet with a family law attorney today.

This blog should be used for informational purposes only. It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice. If you need legal advice regarding Primary Caretaker in a Custody Case, or other family law issues, please feel free to contact  480.461.5300, log on to udallshumway.com, or contact an attorney in your area. Udall Shumway PLC is located in Mesa, Arizona and is a full service law firm. We assist Individuals, families, businesses, schools and municipalities in Mesa and the Phoenix/East Valley