Split custody

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Split custody refers to a custody arrangement in which the children are essentially split up, with some of the children living with one parent, and some of the children living more with the other parent.[1] Split custody is generally chosen because it creates a situation in which children do not have to constantly travel back and forth between their parent's homes and it creates a situation in which siblings that do not get along can be separated.[1]


Split custody arrangements are criticized for a number of reasons.[1] One such reason is that the siblings are separated from each other, which also has the negative aspect of eliminating the emotional support they give one another.[1] Additionally, in this form of arrangement, this effect could be compounded by the fact that they have one primary parent, which has been shown to cause distress in children.[1][2][3]

Other forms of custody[edit]

  • Alternating custody is an arrangement whereby the child/children live for an extended period of time with one parent, and then for a similar amount of time with the other parent. While the child/children are with the parent, that parent retains sole authority over the child/children.
  • Bird's nest custody is an arrangement whereby the parents go back and forth from a residence in which the child/children reside, placing the burden of upheaval and movement on the parents rather than the child/children.
  • Joint custody is an arrangement whereby both parents have legal custody and/or both parents have physical custody.
  • Sole custody is an arrangement whereby only one parent has physical and legal custody of a child.
  • Third-party custody is an arrangement whereby the children do not remain with either biological parent, and are placed under the custody of a third person.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e Webster Watnik (April 2003). Child Custody Made Simple: Understanding the Laws of Child Custody and Child Support. Single Parent Press. pp. 16–38. ISBN 978-0-9649404-3-7. Retrieved 25 September 2011. 
  2. ^ Lerche Davis, Jeanie. "Joint Custody Best for Most Children". WebMD Health News. WebMD, Inc. Retrieved 27 September 2011. 
  3. ^ Peterson, Karen S. (24 March 2002). "Joint Custody Best for Kids After Divorce". USATODAY.com. Retrieved 27 September 2011.