Legal Concepts

Basic concepts

Terms to know in a child custody case (with definitions)
Custody cases can involve lots of confusing terminology and even Latin. We explain the important terms in everyday language.

Best interest of the child: What it is & how to prove it
The best interest of the child standard is the guiding force behind child custody decisions. Learn how to prove you meet the standard.

Alternative dispute resolution: How to avoid custody court
Ways to decide custody outside of a courtroom.

Understanding 3 types of child custody orders
In custody cases, court orders mandate who must care for a child and how. Here are three types of orders that you may see.

Family code & custody laws in US states
Family code governs every decision made in a child custody case. Find out what it is and how the code is created and changed.

Family law litigation & family law disputes
Family law litigation is the process of going to court to resolve disagreements over domestic issues. Is it right for you?

Legal roles

Custodial parents & noncustodial parents
The rights and responsibilities of each parent depend on whether they're the custodial or noncustodial parent.

Who counts as a legal parent
Legal parenthood means someone is the child's parent in the eyes of the law. Learn about the process of becoming a legal parent and more.

People to know in a child custody case
Custody cases can involve many professionals. Learn about the key players.

Guardians ad litem: What they do & look for
A guardian ad litem could be one of the many professionals involved in your case. Their findings influence the final custody order.

Attorney ad litem: What it means & what one does
An attorney ad litem could represent you or your child in court. Find out what they do and how they could be pivotal in the judge's decision.

Legal paraprofessionals in divorce and custody cases
Lawyers and people with legal issues are turning to legal paraprofessionals for help more and more. Find out what these people do.

Guardianship and custody

Guardianship versus custody: Differences & similarities
Learn the differences between guardianship and custody.

How to appoint a guardian for your child if you die
Ensure your child has someone to care for them when you're no longer around. Learn how to choose the right guardian and put your choice in writing.

Does guardianship override parental rights?
Legal guardians and parents have their own roles. After a guardian is appointed, the parent may continue to have custody.

Other concepts

The Uniform Child Custody Act in layman's terms (UCCJEA)
Learn the basics of the UCCJEA and the laws that protect interstate child support orders.

Parental rights & parental responsibilities: Know yours
With the right to be in a child's life comes the responsibility of caring for them. Find out the rights and responsibilities you have.

Children's custody rights: Protecting the child's interest
Although they're rarely discussed, children have rights in custody cases. Keep these rights in mind while preparing your custody case.

What counts as abuse in family court
Always prioritize your child's safety and well-being. When determining custody, courts may consider multiple kinds of behaviors as abuse.

Termination of parental rights | Voluntary & involuntary
The termination of parental rights ends the legal relationship between a parent and child. Find out the reasons why this could happen.

Parental kidnapping & how it affects child custody
What parents need to know about parental kidnapping and its impact on custody.

Explore examples of common schedules

Explore common schedules

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Make My Plan



Long distance schedules

Third party schedules


Summer break

Parenting provisions


How to make a schedule

Factors to consider

Parenting plans:

Making a parenting plan

Changing your plan

Interstate, long distance

Temporary plans

Guides by location:

Parenting plans

Scheduling guidelines

Child support calculators

Age guidelines:

Birth to 18 months

18 months to 3 years

3 to 5 years

5 to 13 years

13 to 18 years


Joint physical custody

Sole physical custody

Joint legal custody

Sole legal custody

Product features:

Software overview

Printable calendars

Parenting plan templates

Journal what happens

Expense sharing

Parenting time tracking

Calculate time & overnights

Ways to use:

Succeed by negotiating

Prepare for mediation

Get ready for court