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Factors considered when determining the best interests of the child 

On Behalf of | May 23, 2024 | Family Law

Child custody cases can be contentious and difficult to navigate. In some situations, parents are amicable and on the same page in terms of raising their child. In other instances, parents and the family court may have different ideas about what is in the best interests of the child.

Ultimately, when parents cannot agree, it falls on the court to make this determination. What factors do the court consider when determining the best interests of the child?

The age of the child 

Children of different ages have different needs. For example, an infant requires a lot of hands-on care. In cases concerning infants, the courts will carefully examine who has been the primary caregiver so far in the child’s life. 

Whether or not the child has any special requirements 

Some children have physical and mental health conditions that mean they require special types of care on a daily basis. For example, the child may require medications that one parent is more familiar with. Or, the child may need to attend a school that meets their educational requirements, so moving the child to a new home may not be ideal. 

The safety of the child 

The safety and well-being of the child is paramount in custody cases. If there are any credible allegations of abuse, then this will be factored into the court’s ruling. For instance, the court can order supervised visitation or even withdraw parental rights in extreme cases. 

There is no one-size-fits-all approach to deciding what is in the best interests of the child, as every situation is unique. However, safety and stability are two primary factors. Seeking legal guidance during a custody case will help ensure that the needs of your child are met.