Child Custody

Child Custody

Determining child custody can be one of the most challenging aspects of a divorce, as both parents are often emotional and worried about what the future holds. We do not recommend trying to resolve custody disputes on your own, especially if your ex is represented by his or her own attorney. You need to speak with an experienced Michigan child custody attorney who can help guide you and explain how the process works.

Divorce or separation can have a major effect on your children. It is important to try and resolve any custody disputes in the least disruptive manner to help avoid further emotional trauma.

Michigan Child Custody Act of 1970

Michigan child-custody matters are governed by the Michigan Child Custody Act of 1970. The Act states that child custody in the state will be determined by what is in the best interest of the child/children. The standard sets forth 12 factors a judge will use when making a ruling. Some of these include:

  • The moral fitness of both parties involved;
  • The affection, love, and other existing emotional ties between the parties and the child;
  • The length of time the child has been living in a stable environment and the desirability of maintaining this continuity; and
  • The capacity of and disposition of both parties to give the child affection, love, and the necessary guidance to continue raising the child in the religion specified, if any.

Determining Custody

There are two types of custody that you need to be familiar with:

  • Legal Custody: Legal custody is what gives a parent the right to make important decisions on how the children are brought up, what schools they attend, health care decisions, religion, and more. The court usually considers shared legal custody as what is best for the child, unless there are circumstances that warrant sole legal custody to one parent.
  • Physical Custody: Physical custody refers to the parent who has primary physical custody of the child/children. Primary residence is a term often associated with physical custody. Disagreeing on physical custody and agreeing on legal custody is not an uncommon issue in divorce.

Visitation/Parenting Time

Even if one parent gets primary custody, it is still important that the child builds bonds with the other parent. The Michigan Parenting Time Guidelines can be a resource for parents to come up with their own parenting-time schedule. A skilled Michigan family law attorney can help you come to an agreement on parenting time if you and your ex can not reach an agreement on your own.

There are a number of aspects that go into determining custody and child support. Let the skilled Michigan child custody lawyers at The Law Offices of Robbins & Licavoli, PLLC help. Contact our office today to schedule a consultation.

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