Family Law Time Sharing Law and Legal Definition

In the context of family law, time-sharing refers to the division of time between parents who are no longer living together. Time sharing is governed by state laws, which vary by state. For example, in one state, a custodial parent shares his or her income directly with the child, and as the time shared with the children becomes more equal the court may deviate from the percentage standard. When the payer has custody of the children more than 30% of the time, the percentage of income owed begins to reduce. When the time shared is more than 40%, the income of both parents is considered. (Generally time shares are determined by overnights or equivalent time spent with the children.) There are special rules for determining child support when a payor owes for children living in separate families, and the court may always deviate from the standard if it decides the result would be unfair to the child or either parent, considering a number of factors.

With either joint legal or sole legal custody, there must be an arrangement for the time-sharing of the child or children. Many counties have guidelines to help the judge and parents determine the access of each of the parents to the child or the children. A parent is generally entitled to visitation with a child unless there is a finding by the judge that such visitation will endanger seriously the child's physical, mental, moral or emotional health.