Parents in the Detroit metro area who are going through a divorce may have many concerns regarding their child. Not only do they want to see their child weather the divorce as well as possible, but they may also be struggling with the fact that there will be times when their child is not in their care. This can lead to bitter custody battles.
However, per Michigan law custody decisions must be based not on the parents’ interests but on the best interests of the child. The following is an overview of the factors Michigan courts will consider when determining the child’s best interests.
Love, affection and guidance
First, the court will consider each parent’s love, affection and emotional ties to the child. Courts will also consider each parent’s ability and willingness to give the child love, affection and guidance. In addition, courts will consider each parent’s ability and willingness to continue the education and religion the child was raised under. Each parent’s capacity to help the child maintain a close relationship with the other parent may also be considered.
Health and moral fitness
Each parent’s ability and willingness to provide the child with adequate food, clothing, medical care and other material needs will be considered. Each parent’s moral fitness will be considered as will each parent’s health. Whether sexual assault or domestic violence is an issue will be taken under consideration.
The child’s environment
How long the child has lived in a stable, satisfactory environment and whether this should be continued will be considered. The permanence of the existing family home or proposed custodial home will be considered. The child’s home, school and community record may also be considered.
The child’s preferences and other factors
If the child is of a sufficient age to express a preference and if this preference is reasonable, the court will take this into account. Finally, the court will consider any other relevant factor in the child custody dispute.
Learn more about child custody in Michigan
Parents in Brighton who are in a custody dispute must always prioritize the child’s best interests above their own. This post is for educational purposes only and does not contain legal advice. Our firm’s webpage on child custody may be of interest to those who want further information on this topic.