FAQ About Divorce and Custody

  1. How long will it take for the divorce to be finished? There is a sixty-day waiting period to finalize a divorce in Kansas. What this means is that the earliest your divorce may be finalized is sixty days after it is filed. If the parties are able to reach an agreement, or if the Respondent is in default, the divorce can be finalized at sixty days. However, if an agreement is not reached, the case may have to be set for trial, which can extend the amount of time it takes for it to be complete.
  2. I’ve heard that Kansas is a “mother’s state.” Is that true? In determining custody, the court considers the best interest of the child, without regard for the gender of the parents. A few of the factors that are considered in determining custody are the desires of the parents, the desires of the child, the relationship of the child with siblings, the child’s adjustment to home, school, and community, and the willingness of the parent to respect the child’s bond with the other parent.
  3. At what age does a child get to decide which parent he wants to live with? The desires of the child with regard to custody and residential placement are one factor among many that the court always considers in making a custody determination. However, a child never gets the right to “decide” his or her own residency, regardless of his or her age.
  4. Is there a difference between custody and residential placement? In Kansas, custody refers to the decision-making for the child. Parents with joint custody have equal rights to make decisions for their child. For example, they jointly decide where the child goes to daycare or school and whether the child receives medical treatment. Sole custody, which gives only one parent the right to make decisions for the child, is only awarded when the court determines that it is in the child’s best interest that both parents not have equal decisionmaking rights Residential placement refers to where the child lives. Primary residency consists of the child living with one parent and having parenting time (previously called “visitation”) with the other parent. Shared residency exists when the child spends essentially equal time with each parent.
  5. Have a question of your own? Contact us at (316) 265-0650.
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