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Getting child custody in Alaska

Although the law prefers that a child's biological parents retain custody of their children after a divorce, this is not always possible. In fact, a parent is not automatically granted custody even if they are married. For an individual to obtain custody of a child, he or she must have a significant connection to that child and show that having custody is in the best interest of the child.

For instance, if one or both parents have committed domestic violence in the past, that could be grounds for proving a parent is unfit to care for his or her child. A parent who has committed domestic violence will generally be disqualified from obtaining sole legal or physical custody unless court imposed guidelines can be met. However, it is important for individuals seeking custody to know that parents will be given every opportunity to be a part of their child's life.

This may mean giving the parent visitation rights or the right for continuous contact. If a parent has been the victim of domestic violence, it will not automatically disqualify that parent from having custody of his or her child. In some cases, custody could be given to another person if the effects of the abuse make it impossible for a biological parent to care for a child.

Whenever possible, courts want to keep biological parents with their children as keeping them in a familiar setting is generally in their best interest. Those who want to obtain custody of a child or parents who wish to retain custody may benefit from having the assistance of a family law attorney who will endeavor to demonstrate that having parental rights will benefit the child.

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