As we have mentioned in other blogs, determining what the best custody situation is for your child is already a stressful situation and a heartache. Children with special needs can make a custody battle an even more sensitive process. A sad truth in Connecticut is that parents of children with special needs tend to have higher divorce rates. This typically has something to do with the extra obligations and responsibilities that placed upon the parents as they care for their child.

What are Special Needs?

A child is considered to have special needs when they have a mental, physical, or emotional condition that requires assistance in their daily lives. Blindness, deafness, autism, and Down syndrome are common examples of such conditions. Depending on the situation, special-needs children might attend special programs in or out of school that happen during unconventional hours or locations.  All cases have unique circumstances that must be considered before deriving a plan for the child’s growth, education, and socialization. The needs of some children might be more profound than others, but none are less important.

Custody Agreements

In all child custody situations, a judge will determine the best interests of the child while making sure that there are minimal disruptions to the child’s life. Coming up with a parenting plan for a child with special needs will require a highly customized agreement. This plan should have input from professional analysis where primary-care doctors and child psychologists offer advice during the process. For example, if your ex-spouse keeps the house with a wheelchair ramp that is vital to your child with cerebral palsy, then this factor will likely carry a considerable weight when the judge is making their decisions.

Alimony and Child Support

Spousal support, such as alimony and child support, will also need to be determined with special considerations in mind. There is a possibility the child support for individuals with special needs may continue until they become 21, however such payments typically end when the child turns 18. Keep in mind, individuals with special needs are often eligible for means-tested government benefits like Medicaid and Social Security. Support payments from one spouse to another could jeopardize eligibility for these government programs if not structured with that in mind.

Contact Us:

If you can not agree on custody, visitation, support, or any other family matters contact the Law Offices of Keith Anthony at (860) 333-6455. Attorney Keith Anthony can help you navigate thru this process, step by step and is open to assist you.  If negotiations fail we can arrange mediation of your disputes. We can help you make agreements that can be filed with the court.