SPC Blog: What You Need to Know

Common Legal Language in Custody Cases: Shared Parenting Zoom Talk with Maureen Martowska

Shared Parenting Council of Connecticut presents a talk with Maureen Martowska. In this video, discusses how certain states—but not CT—judges give joint custody when parents can not agree. She explains different types of custodial relationships and how custody should not be affected by child support payments. She describes the difference between legal and physical custody.

Maureen indicates that the CT statues state that there is a presumption shared custody, and if joint custody is not provided, the court will have will have to provide a reason. This allows parents to appeal a decision in order to “perfect the record.” Maureen reveals that divorcing parents must submit a Parental Responsibility Plan for approval by the court.

Maureen discusses the concept of the “best interest of the child” and the Parens Patriae doctrine, showing how these issues are sometimes in conflict. She discusses the 16 factors in statute 46B-56 that are used by the court to decide the best interest of the child.

Maureen also mentions parent’s constitutional right to make decisions for their children, sometimes even if it creates conflict to see grandparents upon the death of the one of the parents.

Maureen reminds the viewer that when people go to court, there are free resources available such as family services and comprehensive evaluations. She indicates that that mediation is a better place to start resolving custodial issues because the court is set up as an adversarial system.

Maureen Martowska: Maureen is a retired corporate attorney, a current member of the Massachusetts Bar Association, and a former licensed secondary education teacher. She has been a strong advocate for parenting support programs in the communities and the courts to ensure accessibility and equality for the disabled and strongly supports shared parenting.

If you are interested in equal time shared parenting, please see: www.sharedparentinginc.org
Shared Parenting Council CT: John Clapp, Chairman
Host & Moderator: Colleen O’Neil, MSW, M.Ed. https://mediationandbeyond.com
Presenter: Maureen Martowska

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