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How are child custody cases decided?

On Behalf of | Oct 2, 2022 | Child Custody

As a parent, your top priority is the security and happiness of your children. The same can be said for your spouse, although you do not always agree on how to implement this in practice. You’re getting a divorce, and it’s time to settle matters regarding child custody.

What factors will the family court consider before coming up with a ruling on child custody?

The best interests of the child

Every state has nuanced laws regarding child custody cases, but the one area of consensus is the best interests of the child. There is no one-size-fits-all definition of the best interests of the child. So, what is meant by this term?

Previous parental roles

It is widely accepted that the less disruption caused to the child during a divorce, the better. For this reason, the court will examine which roles each parent has traditionally played. If one parent took care of feeding the child, dressing them and taking them to school each day while the other parent worked full-time, then the court may be reluctant to break this routine.

The well-being of the parent

Parents need to be healthy and in the right frame of mind, too, if they are going to raise their children appropriately. That said, it is not uncommon for someone to fall seriously ill, either mentally or physically. This could impact the court’s decision regarding child custody if it feels that parent cannot take care of the child. For instance, the ill parent may only have supervised visitation until they feel better.

During custody proceedings, the courts are always looking at what’s best for the child. Anything that potentially jeopardizes the safety or well-being of the child will be taken very seriously. Having legal guidance behind you as you go through your case will ensure that you remain protected.