What does it mean to have joint custody in Singapore?
Custody refers to the right to make major decisions, including those relating to education, healthcare and religion, for your child.
Joint Custody in Singapore
Joint custody in Singapore is the default position adopted by the Courts. This means that parents will jointly make major decisions on behalf of their child after the divorce.
Having joint custody in Singapore does not mean that you get to live with your child on a day-to-day basis. To be the primary care-giver of your child, you need to have care and control of your child.
Irrespective of whether you have joint custody in Singapore, it is important for both parents to work together for the benefit of their child after their divorce.
As a divorce lawyer in Singapore who witnesses more than 200 divorces a year, I am always happy to see my clients continue playing an active and involved role in their children’s lives after the divorce.
Most parents don’t realise it. Children are not happy if they are made to choose one parent over the other. Even if it is no longer possible for the parents to live together, children would want their parents to be with them at birthday parties and graduation ceremonies.
Lawrence Ng divorced his wife 3 years ago. They were married for 7 years and have an 8-year-old daughter. Despite seeing his daughter only a few times a year (he lives in Hong Kong while his daughter lives in mainland China), he makes an effort to go on family vacations with his ex-wife and daughter.
In Ng’s words, his daughter does not “understand the concept of divorce yet” and he wants “her to learn about it on her own as she grows older”. Ng goes on family vacations with her and his ex-wife to give her daughter “a complete feeling of family”.
He just wants his daughter to be happy.
See: “Lawrence Ng Still Goes On Family Trips with Ex-Wife and Daughter”, Jayne Stars, 18 June 2017
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