Non-Traditional Work Schedules And Child Custody: An Overview

If you're in the midst of a custody battle, you may be concerned that your non-traditional work hours will put you at a disadvantage. While a non-traditional work schedule can certainly make it more difficult to hash out a custody schedule, it isn't impossible. Below is an overview of how a non-traditional work schedule may affect custody arrangements and how a family law attorney can help you.

What's Considered "Non-Traditional?"

If you work anything other than a 9-5 work shift, or if you have rotating shifts, such as one week on/one week off, your work schedule would be considered non-traditional.

Certain professions are known for their non-traditional work schedules, such as doctor, firefighter, etc., and it can be difficult to set up a custody plan since schedules will change every few months and their may be other things to worry about, such as being on-call.

Will a Non-Traditional Work Schedule Affect You Getting Joint Custody?

While you may not be able to have a 50/50 custody schedule (depending on how many hours you work), working non-traditional hours should not affect your odds of getting joint physical custody.

When a judge determines custody, she must consider what's in the best interest of the child. This usually means that both parents will get equal (or near equal) parenting time and that both parents will have to work together to make the arrangement work. If you're concerned that your ex-partner may use your work schedule against you, rest assured that non-traditional work schedules are becoming more and more common, and judges are becoming better able to accommodate them.

What Custody Schedules are Common When One Parent Works Non-Traditional Hours?

As non-traditional work schedules can vary widely, there's no one common custody schedule that will work for all non-traditional workers. If you work with a family law attorney, however, they may have a few ideas for what kinds of custody arrangement you can request.

For example, if you work one week on and one week off and are seeking 50/50 custody, your attorney may suggest that you request custody of the children on your week off. If you're a doctor who regularly works 3 12-hour shifts each week and has on-call weekends, perhaps you choose a custody arrangement that allows you to take the child for a few days during the week as opposed to every other weekend.

To learn more about custody arrangements for non-traditional work schedules, consult with a family law attorney like Margit M. Hicks, PA Attorney at Law today.