How Do Judges Decide Which Parent Gets Custody of a Child?

June 21, 2021

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When parents disagree on who would take care of their child, judges need to decide based on the kid’s best interest. The judge has to make the critical decision in our child’s life, even without meeting the kid even once. It is recommended that parents take the child custody case to court, and resolve the issues mutually. Unfortunately, when the judge has to decide, they look into several aspects. 

So, let’s scroll down and have a look:-

#1 Age of the Children

During the tender age, judges believe that children should live with their mothers, as they need her love to nurture; sometimes, a child won’t get from their father. 

Whereas, if the child is in their teenhood, then the judge may order the father to care for the child in exceptional cases.

#2 Parent’s Living Situation

It is a kind of chicken-and-egg dilemma; the parent’s live-in situation has a say when it comes to child custody. Often, the parent who stays in the family home is granted custody of the child because it provides stability to the kid and continuity in our everyday lives. What’s more, sometimes, the parent with child custody is awarded the family home to stay in. So, if you are planning to crash in with your best college pal, then don’t think you’ll get that custody of the child.

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If you want to spend time with your child, you’ve to be careful about your living situation. The proximity of your house to your spouse would help you gain more time with your kid. The closer you are, the better the odds of an equal time-sharing plan both parents have ample time to spend with their child. The location of the school and social activities also matter. 

#3 Each Parent’s Willingness

The judge will thoroughly look into your record of cooperating with your partner regarding the schedule. The judge 

may also look into other factors, such as whether you bad-mouth your spouse in front of your kid or interfere with visitation. 

It is imperative to know that parents who are cooperative will hold the edge when it comes to child custody. 

#4 Each Parent’s Relationship 

It often happens when one parent spends the least amount of time with the child, suddenly develops true love and affection, and stays to have their kid’s custody post the breakdown of the marriage. In most cases, the desire is sincere, and most courts respect it, primarily if that parent has been devoting ample effort towards the child during the separation. But, you got to know that the judge will carefully analyze the reason for the change of heart. And, determine whether this is not being done to win over child custody primarily. 

#5 Child’s Preference

If the kid is old enough, above the age of 12, then the judge may talk to the child to know about their preference for custody & visitation. In some states, it is mandatory to consider the child’s views by the judge before giving the judgment. But, there are also certain states that disapprove of the thought of bringing the kid in the process of child custody. 

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Even though the judge may not talk to the kid directly in the court, but know their views through a custody evaluator. 

#6 Abuse

Only if there’s clear evidence that one parent has been involved in abuse activities they can be barred from child custody forever, the judge may go that extra mile in limiting the access to the child. Whenever it happens, the meeting will be in a supervised environment. 

Finally, every case is different; the judge may mull over numerous other factors before giving their judgment on child custody.

In the end, to successfully win the child custody battle, you need the expertise of a family attorney lawyer. They are well-versed with the rules and regulations regarding child custody in the state. Your lawyer will thoroughly analyze your case and assist you in proceeding with your battle in court. Make sure you research well to hire a trustworthy attorney.