Who Gets Child Custody? What Are The Factors That Are Taken Into Account?

If you are involved in a case, where you are trying to get child custody, you may feel worried, hurt, or even angry – probably because you do not want to lose. You need to control your emotions because that may affect your decision. You have to have a cool head so that you can deal with the situation wisely. The idea is to be well informed on what the laws say about it. The more information you have about the laws on how the court determines about the custody of the child, the easier it will be for you to handle the process. Whether your case is in a court or you are trying to get a mutually agreeable decision with your ex-spouse through talks (outside the court), there are several factors that must be taken into account. The most important thing is to make sure that the child’s interested is well protected. The final decision must be based on what is best for the child, not what is best for you. Following are some of the different factors that you must work on in this regard.

Who Can Spend More Time With The Child?

In order to determine who should be awarded with child custody, the first thing to consider is which spouse can manage to spend more time with the child. It is true that baby sitters are widely available out there, but your child will obviously benefit the most when a parent spends time with him/her.

The Background Record

The background records of the parents also play a crucial role in this regard. For example, the parent who has a bad lifestyle (not good for the child), or has criminal records, has used drugs, or had been found guilty of abusing children is never awarded with child custody. There might still be certain exceptions, especially if both the partners have bad background record but one of them has shown better improvement.

The Extended Family Of The Parent

A parent who moves frequently often does not have an extended family and he/she is not even able to develop good friends and neighbors. On the other hand, if you have an extended family and are able to provide your children the advantage of having good neighbors, friends, cousins, and grandparents, the children will obviously benefit most by living with you.

Religion

Though it has been a matter of debate, as long as the laws are concerned, the parent who is religious (practices a specific religion) is more likely to get child custody as compared to the one who does not believe in God or any religion. It has been found in various surveys that religious people live a more disciplined and healthy lifestyle.

The Opinions Of The Children May Also Matter

If your children are at least 12, they have the legal right to have a say in the matter and tell the court which of the parents they want to stay with. Here, it is important for you to keep in mind that children do not get the right to take the final decision; it is just that their opinions are seriously considered when the court takes a final decision in the case.

Intellectual, Emotional, And Financial Support

The parent who is capable to provide his/her children better financial, emotional, and intellectual support is very much likely to get child custody. But, it does not mean that you have to be a rich genius in order to win the custody. What the court looks into is which of the parents is in a better position to provide love, encouragement, and learning opportunities to the children along with the basic things like food, clothing, and home.

If you have been the primary caretaker of the children, you are likely to be awarded with the custody, as the court does not finds it appropriate to disturb that relationship that has already grown well. The idea is to make a final decision in a child custody case in a way that results in as little changes as possible in the life of the children.