WomensLaw is not just for women. We serve and support all survivors, no matter their sex or gender.
Important: Even if courts are closed, you can still file for a protection order and other emergency relief. See our FAQ on Courts and COVID-19.
Legal Information: New York
Online chat with WomensLaw’s attorneys happening now. Join us!
Updated: November 9, 2020
What options are there for physical custody?
If you have sole physical custody of your child, then your child lives with you primarily (although the child may spend time in the other parent’s home during visitation). A parent with sole physical custody is sometimes called a child’s “primary caretaker,” or “custodial parent.” If you are the custodial parent, you have responsibility for the everyday care of your child when s/he is with you and the decisions that affect that care.
Sometimes a judge can order shared physical custody. If you have shared physical custody (also known as residential custody), your child will live with you and the other parent, with both parents having frequent contact with their child. The child may or may not spend equal amounts of time with each parent, depending on what the judge believes to be in the best interest of the child.
© 2008–2020 WomensLaw.org is a project of the National Network to End Domestic Violence, Inc. All rights reserved. This website is funded in part through a grant from the Office for Victims of Crime, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice. Neither the U.S. Department of Justice nor any of its components operate, control, are responsible for, or necessarily endorse, this website (including, without limitation, its content, technical infrastructure, and policies, and any services or tools provided). NNEDV is a 501©(3) non-profit organization; EIN 52-1973408.