How do courts determine a child’s best interests?

How do courts determine a child’s best interests?

Divorce is hard on adults and children alike. When a family splits due to the end of the marital relationship between two parents, everyone in the household can feel the burden of the event. However, when children are involved in Michigan divorces, courts look to protect them by determining their best interests for child custody purposes.

Different children have different interests, and therefore no two custody plans may be exactly the same. When parents have concerns and questions about how child custody matters may be managed in their own divorces, they can talk to dedicated divorce and family law attorneys. This post should not be used as legal advice or guidance.

Determining a child’s best interests

The best interests of a child are not determined based on one or two considerations. Courts evaluate many factors to best address the needs and expectations that individual children have for their own lives. Some of those factors include:

  • The emotional relationships between the child and their parents
  • The health of the parents and child
  • The stability of the child’s proposed post-divorce home
  • The existence of domestic violence in the family
  • The ability of the parents to work together to contribute to the child’s needs
 

As different children have different physical, emotional, psychological, and educational needs, their custody plans must be tailored to fit their requirements. Parents can fight to protect their children with strong child custody plans.

When a child’s interests change

Children are dynamic beings and over time their needs can vary. While all humans need food, shelter, and love, a child’s individual needs may fluctuate with regard to where and from whom they seek support. When a child’s custody plan no longer fits their best interests, it may be possible to modify it through the courts. Changes to child custody plans can be discussed with readers’ trusted divorce lawyers.

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