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Bristol Palin's child custody case is closed

Although their son is three years old, it was only earlier this month that the child custody case between Bristol Palin and Levi Johnston was finally closed. But the closure is not necessarily the result of the parties reaching an agreement about how they want to share custody of and raise their son, Tripp. According to family court records, the case was closed because of a "lack of activity."

So what does this mean? Well, that is not terribly clear, according to media reports and to a statement by Johnston's family law attorney. He told the Associated Press that the best way to interpret the "lack of activity" finding is to assume that Palin and Johnston are going to resolve their child custody issues on their own, without the help of a family court judge or mediator. An attorney for Palin did not comment on the closure or Johnston's attorney's statement.

According to court documents, Palin and Johnston decided in 2010 that they would share legal custody of their son, and that Palin would have primary physical custody. Since then, however, Palin has filmed a reality television show called "Bristol Palin: Life's a Tripp" which focused on her life as a single mom.

When the show began filming, Johnston seemed to disagree with Palin's decision to feature Tripp on a national TV show. However, he never took action to block the production of the show or his son's role in it. Under their agreement to share legal custody, it seems likely that Johnston could have successfully done that, if he so desired.

It remains to be seen whether Palin and Johnston will end up back in family court. We will continue to update our blog with any new developments.

Source: USA Today, "Bristol Palin, Levi Johnston's custody case closed," Ann Oldenburg, Sept. 18, 2012

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