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Rhode Island Child Custody Lawyer

Talk to a Rhode Island Custody Attorney: 401-400-4254

As difficult as it is to separate from your spouse, nothing can be more difficult, and nothing can be more important, than arrangements made that relate to your children. Unfortunately, divorcing couples oftentimes clash the hardest over the custody of their children, resulting in long and complex legal struggles that can take a serious emotional toll. If you are worried about losing custody of your children in a divorce, it is imperative that you consult with a skilled Rhode Island divorce attorney from TJC • ESQ as soon as possible.

Our Rhode Island family lawyers understand what your children mean to you, and we are prepared to go to great lengths to protect your right to maintain an active presence in their lives. Since 1984, our child custody attorneys in Rhode Island give out compassionate legal counsel and show steadfast dedication, with our 10.0 Superb Avvo rating and our Super Lawyers® designation. Our firm’s assistance can help you rest easy knowing that your custody battle is in good hands.

Tell us your situation by requesting an initial consultation today!

Balanced Child Custody Solutions

As a leading Rhode Island child custody attorney, firm founder Timothy Conlon represents both mothers and fathers in issues involving sole and joint custody of children. Under Rhode Island law, child custody is determined according to the best interests of the child, along with consideration given to other key factors.


The presiding judge will consider all of the following in their decision:

  • The wishes of the parents
  • The preferences of the child
  • The relationship between the child and parents
  • The health of all involved parties
  • The level of adjustment required for the child
  • The stability of the home environment

When possible, we will assist you in formulating and negotiating custody arrangements that both you and your spouse are comfortable with. By collaborating with each other, it is possible that you can avoid the need for court involvement. We recognize, however, that sometimes agreements cannot be reached. In these instances, we are prepared to work closely with you to present your case before the Rhode Island Family Court. It is best that you consult with our firm to assess your situation and establish a plan of action.

Types of Custody and Parenting Plans

Child custody agreements can be more complicated than they seem on the surface. Most parents will understandably want to have custody of their child but may not realize that custody is divided into two distinct forms, and each one of those split again into two levels of responsibility. When you consider your child custody agreement, which is sometimes synonymous with a parenting plan, you should first know the details of all forms of custody.

The two forms of child custody recognized in Rhode Island are:

  1. Physical: Determines where the child will live on a regular basis.
  2. Legal: Determines which parent can make important life decisions for the child.

The two levels of responsibility in Rhode Island legislation are:

  1. Full: One parent has final say in all decisions and the child only lives with them, whereas the other parent has no legal say in decisions and only sees the child during visitation schedules.
  2. Joint: Each parent can influence the major life decisions of the child and so both must agree before a choice is made, and the child lives with each parent alternatingly.

Example: You are granted full physical custody and joint legal custody of your child. In this scenario, your child will only live with you but before you make significant choices for your child – such as what religion they practice or what medical treatments they receive – you must discuss them with your ex-spouse.

Paternity Actions in Your Child Custody Case

A man who is not the biological father of a child may lose some of their inherit rights to see or raise a child during a custody hearing. If this is called into question, either spouse can file a paternity action, or an establishment hearing, to determine fatherhood with certainty. DNA tests conducted in a modern-day laboratory are considered to be foolproof. If the father in the custody hearing is proven to not be the biological father, this does not automatically disqualify him from receiving any physical or legal custody, as equitable parent statutes could show that he has put in full effort to be the true father of the child. (See our blog entry about de facto parent claims for more information.)

Retain Top-Rated Legal Counsel Today

In this area of the law, the result of your case directly depends on the skill of your attorney and the quality of your legal representation. With more than 30 years of experience assisting clients and working on behalf of their families, our Rhode Island child custody attorneys are reliable legal professionals who can protect your legal rights and those of your children. At TJC • ESQ, maintaining the well-being of our clients is our top priority, and we are fully prepared to go the distance on your behalf. Your children are of utmost importance – make sure they are protected!

Contact us online today and let us put our knowledge and experience to work for you.

TJC • ESQ is now a part of Burns & Levinson, one of the largest and most respected family law firms in the nation. Learn more.

American Association For Justice
Pound Civil Justice Institute Member Fellow
NewsWeek Leaders in Showcase Family Law 2011
Super Lawyers Timothy J. Conlon Selected in 2020
AV Preeminent
The Best Lawyers In America