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Can You File for Custody Before You File for Divorce?
If you’re considering filing for divorce or if you’ve already filed for divorce, you might need a custody order right now. Nevada divorce law allows the parties to get temporary orders for custody while their case is pending in the court.
A contested divorce can take many months to resolve, so a temporary order can be beneficial for the parties and for any children that are involved. You may need to work with a Las Vegas family law attorney for your temporary order. Here’s what you need to know about temporary custody orders in Las Vegas divorce cases.
Why File for a Temporary Order?
Before there’s a temporary custody order, there’s no legally enforceable court order for custody. If one parent takes the kids, there’s nothing that the police can do to help. A custody order gives the parents legally enforceable rights until the court can make final decisions in the case.
A temporary order can give you peace of mind. It can also provide the children with a routine for going to school, their extracurricular activities and routine contact with both parents.
Why Is a Temporary Custody Order Important?
A temporary custody order in a Nevada divorce case sets a precedent. A temporary custody order often becomes a final custody order. In Nevada divorce proceedings, the courts always look to establish a predictable routine for the children.
If you win primary custody on a temporary basis, there’s a good chance that you’re going to win it permanently. It’s essential to pursue a motion for temporary custody with the same attention and intensity that you address the final custody hearing in your case. Because the courts prefer the status quo for children, the best way to win the custody that you’re looking for is to win it at the temporary custody hearing.
What If One of Us Moves Before There’s a Temporary Order?
If you move out of the marital home without a temporary custody order in Nevada, you’re establishing a precedent of primary custody with the other parent. If the other parent has a period of time alone with the children in the marital home, the court will weight it heavily in their favor when it’s time to decide a temporary or final custody order.
A temporary custody order can set custody fairly from the beginning, and it can also determine the use of the marital home. What exactly the court orders in your case depends on what you ask for, and it depends on the exact circumstances of your case.
Who Can File for a Temporary Order? How Does the Court Decide?
Either party can file for a temporary custody order as soon as there’s an active divorce case. You don’t have to be the plaintiff in the divorce. Both parties have the standing to request a temporary custody order in a Nevada divorce case.
If you’re able to agree on a temporary order with the other party, the court can enter the order without a hearing or with only a brief hearing. If you’re not able to reach an agreement with the other party, the court holds a hearing to consider the evidence.
What’s Decided in a Temporary Order?
A temporary custody order can establish physical and legal custody. Physical custody determines who has the child on a day-to-day basis. Legal custody is who makes major decisions regarding the child and who has access to information about the child.
A temporary custody order can decide all of that, and it can also determine a parenting schedule for the interim period until the court can make a final decision. Also, the court can make orders for temporary child support and spousal support payments. The court applies the same formula and legal standards for deciding temporary custody and temporary child support that they use for all custody and child support orders. It’s essential to build your case to present the evidence that you want the court to consider.
What Happens to the Temporary Order When the Divorce Is Final?
Once there’s a final court order in the case, the temporary order is extinguished. Most divorce judgments state that the final judgment of divorce supersedes all temporary orders. If circumstances change, you can ask the court to modify a temporary order before or after your divorce is finalized.
How Can a Family Law Attorney Help?
If you believe that a temporary order may be right for you or you’re looking to modify a temporary order, there are a number of ways that an attorney can help. First, your attorney can help you evaluate your case to determine whether you have grounds to file for temporary custody. They can also give you ideas about things that you can do to make your case for temporary custody stronger.
You want to make sure that you do everything that you can from the beginning of your case because a temporary custody order sets such a strong precedent for final orders in the case. Armed with a game plan, your attorney can help you ensure that you file and serve your motion for a temporary order correctly. They can build the evidence and attend your hearing with you as your counsel.