Alternatig custody in Poland. Is it worth to go for it?

Alternatig custody in Poland. It is not easy to have alternating custody approved by Polish courts.  When parents cannot come into an  agreement on custody issue, and this mostly the case, the court will issue its decision.  Knowing the realities of the Polish justice,  the upbringing of the child will be entrusted to one of the parents while the other one will indirectly be isolated.

The Court may decide about the alternating custody in Poland only when both parents would share this idea. Therefore, the only way to reach judgment permitting  shared custody – is  joint request of both parents.

What does alternating custody in Poland mean?

Alternating custody in Poland means that the court  gives to each parent custody at a specific time during the year, eg. two weeks the child lives with its father, two weeks with its mother. In practice, it means that the child has two sets of clothes, shoes, toys, books etc, one at its mother’ place and one at its father’splace.

Despite the fact that Polish courts rarely adjudicate  shared custody, there are  certain aspects supporting such  solution and giving hope for a positive court’ decision.

For and against alternating custody in Poland

First of all, separation or divorce of parents does not necessarily mean a dramatic change in life of a child, ie. a practical loss of contact with one of the parents towards almost exclusive contact with another one.

Moreover, when both parents care about their real influance on the upbringing of their children,  alternating custody can be a good solution. Then, both parents equally share the daily hardships and pleasures associated with education, starting from the morning toilet, bringing a child to/from school, doing together  homework, and ending with dinner and talk about  the events of the day. In the long term, alternating custody system creates more chances to develop a really good relationship with the child and to maintain contact by both mom and dad.

Opponents indicate that a child brought up in this system is deprived of stability and belonging to any of the homes. And as it is known  – the stability is very much needed for proper development of child. In this aspect,  the opinion of expert- psychologists will be crucial. They will assess the relationship between child and parents and show the most advantageous solution. Therefore, you should not assume an unfavorable court’ decision, because a positive opinion of experts may be the most important evidence in the case and can be the basis of positive court’s decision.


Although under Polish law, there is no clear legal regulations concerning alternating custody in Poland, there is no doubt that family courts in Poland may issue their decision allowing such solution.

We cannot agree with opinion shared by some people that shared custody is always a harm to the welfare of a child and should not be allowed. We always need to take individual circumstances into account while applying for alternating custody in Poland. In specific situation, this form of custody might be the best solution for the child.

Nevertheless,applying for shared custody is not as easy and requires many aspects to be taken into account before submitting application to the court.