Custody factors that courts consider

Parents who desire to be involved in their children’s lives after divorce should pay close attention to the custody process. If the court is creating the custody agreement, it may limit or increase the time each parent has according to its perspective.

In making this determination, it looks at several different factors. Many of the elements it considers can fall under a few categories.

Fitness

The courts operate in the best interest of children, and their main concern is that those children be in situations that are conducive to their safety, development and overall growth. Therefore, parents should try to show that they are fit to provide those needs and more. It is important to note that this goes beyond the physical; it is also important that parents show they will be available to the children and not working or socializing all the time. Those parents considering moving to a different area should note that the courts also consider transportation and distance from the other parent in determining parenting time.

Financial Stability

For those parents who do not make as much money as the other parent, that does not create an area of concern, necessarily. If those parents can show that they are responsible with their funds and have a plan for allocating any child or spousal support payments, the courts may still see them as financially stable.

Cooperation

A willingness to work with an ex-spouse can look very favorable for a parent. Depending upon the parents’ relationship and their level of communication, it may be possible for them to work together and create their own parenting plan, including a custody agreement, rather than depending upon the courts to make the decision.

These are a few of the most important aspects the courts consider, but it is not an exhaustive list. Those parents going through or planning to go through the divorce process should take time to examine all of the aspects the court looks at and develop a strong case.

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