When parents divorce, deciding child custody is an essential step. Wyoming courts award custody based on the best interests of the child, which is assumed to be satisfied when the child has frequent and prolonged contact with both parents, provided that this does not contradict the safety of the child.
The court always considers two main types of custody: legal custody, which determines which parent has the right to make essential decisions in the process of raising a child, and physical custody, which determines the child's place of residence.
Depending on the circumstances, the court may award shared custody to both parents or only one spouse. In any case, the final decision shall be made after analyzing various factors, including:
- the wishes of the child and parents regarding custody;
- the relationship of the child with each parent;
- the ability of each parent to meet the child's needs;
- the ability of parents to cooperate in the process of raising a child;
- the physical and mental health of each parent;
- and each parent's place of residence.