Conservatorship includes rights and duties that you receive as a parent that relate to child rearing. Things such as educational decisions or medical decisions in non-emergent situations. Psychological and psychiatric decisions also fall in this category. These are all incredibly important, however, the one right that most people have heard of is “the exclusive right to determine the primary domicile of the child.”
So, what do these mean? The exclusive right to determine the primary domicile of the child is a determination of who the child or children will live with primarily. The significance of this is that the “non-primary” parent, will be the one who ends up paying child support to the other parent. Also, many of the rights and duties enumerated above can follow “primary”, especially educational decisions.
If your child has any medical, psychological, or psychiatric issues, you can clearly understand how important these rights are. It becomes even more important if you and your former spouse do not agree on proper care for the children. An example where this is seen frequently deals with vaccines. As you are aware, there has been a significant anti-vaxxer movement in the United States over the past years. What happens if you and your spouse are polar opposites on that particular issue? What happens if your child has a diagnosis of ADD or ADHD? Should she be medicated? If so, which medication should be used? Should therapy be involved? Who should perform the therapy?
As you can see from the few questions above, these rights and duties are often heavily intertwined and affect one another. These rights can be awarded in many different ways, exclusive, joint by agreement, independent and notice requirements can be added in as well. What’s best for you and your children? Only you know. That is why it is so important to spend the necessary time and focus on the issues that will likely arise with your children over the next many years.
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