Ever wonder what the courts take into consideration during a custody battle? Of course they take into consideration the testimony of each parent and their reasons of how that by simple assumption she or he automatically would have the child’s best interests in mind. Additionally however, the criteria includes information from outside the home and outside the legal system as well. Most notably, information is needed from psychologists, educators (teachers and counselors), health personnel, and other behavioral scientists. You should never enter a custody battle without a battle plan tailored to both your offensive and defensive plans. If you expect your marital war to play a part in your custody battle that needs consideration. If child support, or lack thereof, is a mitigating factor in the motion for custody or in your defense, it’s important to note and plan for that as well.
The criterion for custody is largely a state by state issue so the following list cannot be looked upon for specificity, but by all means, the following criteria will be evaluated. So get your pads out and get ready to make notes to yourself and start getting your business in order.
• Love and affection between parent and child
• Emotional ties between parent and child
• Capacity of parent to give child guidance
• Capacity of parent to continue educating and raising the child in its religion or creed, if any.
• Capacity of parent to provide food
• Capacity of parent to provide clothing
• Capacity of parent to provide medical care
• Capacity of parent to provide remedial care
• Capacity of parent to provide other material needs
• Length of time lived in an emotionally or psychologically stable, satisfactory environment and the desirability of
• Permanence of proposed custodial home (geographical stability)
• Moral fitness of parent
• Mental health of parent
• Physical health of parent
• Home record of child
• School record of child
• Community record of child
• Child’s preference for parent (if court deems child sufficient in age)
Simone Spence owns Child Support Solutions, LLC, an organization that teaches parents to collect child support arrears without an attorney. The author of “1-800-Deadbeat” and “Deadbeats, What Responsible Parents Need to know about Collecting Child Support”. Simone can be reached at 888-390-1950 or simone@DontGetMadGetPaid.com Connect: Facebook or Twitter.