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Katie Holmes, Tom Cruise headed for a split

Famed actress Katie Holmes, who is married to the even more famous Tom Cruise, has done something that not many in Georgia were expecting -- she filed for divorce from her husband of five years. Keeping her intentions well-hidden, she filed anonymously, making the divorce a surprise to everyone, including Cruise. Holmes is also seeking full child custody of the couple's 6-year-old daughter, Suri.

Some believe that the reason for Holmes' filings is because of Cruise's devotion to the Church of Scientology. Though it is thought Holmes has not been as close to Scientology as Cruise, this division could easily account for both the divorce and the push for sole legal custody of their daughter.

Family law practitioners have suggested that Holmes is likely seeking sole custody because she does not want their daughter's care or upbringing dictated by Scientology. In general, Scientologists shun the use of medicine and physician-based therapy, which could compromise the child's welfare. In addition, if Cruise were to push for legal custody of their daughter, he may need to show that he will make decisions in the child's best interests, not solely based off of Scientology doctrine.

Still, attorneys say it is unusual for anyone to seek sole custody unless the other parent is clearly endangering the child physically or emotionally. Judges attempt to rule in the best interest of the child, regardless of the requests of the parents, and so it is uncertain whether Holmes will succeed in her quest. Currently, it is unknown what evidence Holmes will bring to court that will support her request for sole custody, and so it is difficult to know whether she will be able to convince the judge.

Despite all of the information available now, much remains unknown in this case. Experts say that the process could quickly turn ugly if Cruise decides to fight against the custody agreement, which he likely will.

Source: Fox News, "In seeking sole custody, does Katie Holmes need evidence Tom Cruise is dud dad?" Hollie McKay, July 2, 2012

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