For most families being redefined by parents’ separation or divorce, children are well served by having both parents present and involved. Unfortunately, that is not the case for every child in New Mexico.

When parents are unfit, neglectful or abusive, children will fare better with limited or no involvement with them. That’s when sole custody may be the best option. If that is the case for your child, the family law attorneys at Roybal-Mack & Cordova, PC will help you fight for sole custody.

Defining Sole Custody

Sole custody may apply to both types of custody recognized in New Mexico:

  • Physical custody
    Sole physical custody means that the child will reside with only one parent. The other parent may still have supervised or unsupervised visitation.
  • Legal custody
    Sole legal custody means that only one parent has the authority to make decisions about a child’s residence, medical care, education, extracurricular activities, religion and daily life.

It is possible, although rare, for a parent to have sole legal custody but share joint physical custody. Typically, sole custody will refer to both custody types.

When Sole Custody May Be Appropriate

The State of New Mexico presumes that joint custody is in the child’s best interests. However, there are a number of reasons that may not be the case for your child and family.

Sole custody may better serve your child’s best interests if one parent has:

  • Historically been absent during large portions of your child’s life and the inconsistency is unlikely to change;
  • A history of substance abuse that has not been successfully treated;
  • Ongoing contact with criminal activity that could endanger your child;
  • Been physically and/or verbally abusive to the child.

Domestic violence perpetrated by one spouse or parent against the other is often not reason enough to be granted sole custody.

Also, New Mexico expressly states that one parent’s unwillingness or inability to pay child support is not grounds for taking away custody.

We Help You Fight for Your Child’s Best Interests

To secure sole custody of your child, you will need to prove that the other parent is unfit. If the other parent is actively involved in your child’s life, that could be a difficult battle.

The family law team at Roybal-Mack & Cordova, PC have the experience needed to know how to best build a case for sole custody. We know what reasons and arguments the Court will accept and what types of evidence compel judges to make the custody determination.

Our team also has experience working with children. When age appropriate and with your consent, we can involve them in the custody process so that their voices are heard by those deciding their family’s future.

Contact us to interview our team. We are based in Albuquerque but provide custody representation throughout New Mexico.

Dedicated Advocacy. Meaningful Results.


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