When parents get a divorce, the children – regardless of age – are affected. For some, the divorce means there is going to be less arguing in the home. For others, it may be the saddest and most emotional event of their young lives. However, it is estimated that more than one million marriages where children are involved end in divorce every year. Parents that have a child with special needs are typically going to face a much more challenging divorce process.
While it is wise to hire a Miami divorce attorney for help with the situation, there are a few other considerations to keep in mind, as well.
The Child’s Best Interests
During the child custody hearing or divorce proceedings, the court is going to consider what action is in the best interest of the special need’s child. In some circumstances that is going to be the same thing the parents want; however, in some cases it may be different. Parents may believe they are acting in the child’s best interest, but the court may consider additional factors.
Some of the factors that are considered when determining child custody issues for a special needs child include:
- The stability of the home environment
- The capacity and ability for each parent to meet and understand their child’s needs
- What the child wants
- The relationship between each parent, siblings and other family members
- The child’s age
- Discipline methods used by each parent
Responding to Divorce
Each special need’s child is going to react differently to divorce. It is crucial to consider the emotional maturity of the child, their ability to cope with change and how resilient they are to change. All of these factors may influence the visitation arrangement. For example, rather than shorter visitation periods, it may be easier for a child if the visitation was for a longer period.
Childcare considerations also have to be made. Some special needs children need to find someone who can respond to their unique needs. Even something that is as minor as changing the pickup location can cause anxiety for some kids. In some situations, the court will even consult with doctors and other professionals in a child’s life to ensure they are making the right decision.
All divorces are difficult, especially when children are involved. However, when a special needs child is involved with the situation, it may make the entire process more complicated. While a Miami divorce attorney can help, it is also a good idea to know some of the factors resulted in this situation.
To learn more about the divorce process and how it may affect a special needs child, it is a good idea to contact an attorney in Miami. The Carolan Family Law Firm, P.A. are available to help in any divorce or child custody situation.