Child custody

I don’t know if I’ve ever seen that term “secondary” used in terms of custody on this site but I would imagine the one parent has primary custody and therefore the other has secondary and this is what is meant. In terms of rights, much of that has to be spelled out by the parents or their lawyers…they should be able to have equal access to medical and school records for the children. I would imagine that unless a parent gives up their parental rights and has no visitation or contact with the child(ren) and pays no support, the court cannot assign sole physical or legal custody.

Secondary physical custody and secondary legal custody generally means that the party with secondary physical custody spends less time with the minor child and that the parent with secondary legal custody has the pirmary right to make decisions for the children. Sole custoy means that the parent with sole custody has the exclusive right to custody and decison making for the child.

P.S. Please feel free to bring up this or any other topic on our live call-in show every Wednesday at 11:00 a.m. EST. Visit for details

Helena M. Nevicosi
Attorney with Rosen Law Firm

4101 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 500
Raleigh, North Carolina 27607
919.787.6668 main phone
919.787.6361 main fax

Charlotte Office
301 McCullough Drive
Suite 510
Charlotte, NC 28262
Main Phone: (704)307.4600
Main Fax: (704) 9343.0044

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Durham, NC 27713
Phone: (919) 321-0780


The response posted above is based upon the limited factual information made available and is not intended as a full and complete response to the question. The only reliable manner to obtain complete and adequate legal advice is to consult with an attorney, fully explain your situation, and allow the attorney sufficient opportunity to research the applicable law and facts required to render an accurate opinion. The basic information provided above is intended as a public service only, a full discussion with an attorney should be undertaken before taking any action. The information posted on this forum is available for public viewing and is not intended to create an attorney client relationship with any individual. These answers are provided for informational purposes only, a person should consult with their own individual legal counsel before taking any action that could affect their legal rights or obligations.

What legal rights does a parent have when they are given secondary physical custody and secondary legal custody?

Why are the terms sole physical custody and sole legal custody no longer used?