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What Do Judges Consider When Awarding Custody to a Parent?

Family Law Attorney

If you talk with judges, they’ll tell you that child custody cases are some of the most difficult cases that come before them. There is so much at stake in these cases, and judges have the difficult task of deciding which parent is most capable of providing the best home for their children. Frequently, the other parent maintains parenting rights and is granted visitation, but the judge must decide where the child will primarily reside.

Because of the importance of child custody disputes, judges must consider multiple factors before rendering a decision. In some instances, judges will talk with the child or children, depending upon age, and do so privately to get their opinion of their parents capabilities. This can put children in a difficult position, but judges who are skilled at doing this are able to ask questions of the child in a manner that does not make the child feel like they are betraying one parent.

Factors such as criminal records, drug or alcohol addictions, and employment are commonly considered by judges during custody cases. The court’s desire is to determine the most safe, stable, and nurturing environment for the child.

Family law attorneys who represent parents in child custody cases seek to convince the judge that their client is able to provide a more suitable living environment for their child than the other parent. Ideally, parents are able to work together to create a plan for the child’s living arrangements, but this is often impossible and the process becomes adversarial. 

Because most judges take their role very seriously as they carefully deliberate the most appropriate living environment for the child or children, they dig deep to learn as much as possible about both parents. If you’re facing a divorce and are nervous about potentially losing custody of your children, contact me as soon as possible. I’ve had tremendous success representing parents in custody disputes, and I know what it takes to create a plan to achieve the best possible outcome for your family. Contact me today to schedule a free consultation.

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