CAN CHILDREN DECIDE WHICH PARENT THEY LIVE WITH AFTER A DIVORCE?

Child custody is often the most contentious part of any divorce, especially if both parents want primary custody of their children. What about the child’s opinion? Does that matter when determining child custody?

If you cannot negotiate a child custody plan with your ex-spouse out of court, then you will have to go to a family law court and ask a judge to rule. When making a child custody determination, the judge’s primary responsibility is to do what is in the best interest of the children. The judge will take many factors into consideration, including which parent can provide the most stable environment and which parent has traditionally provided what type of care for the children.

If children are old enough (usually age 12 or older) a judge may ask each child his or her opinion and preference. It is important to note that even if the child has a clear preference on which parent he or she wants to live with, that doesn’t mean the judge will feel the same way. If the judge feels that the child would be better off living with the other parent, the judge may rule against the child’s wishes. As a parent, it is your job to show the judge that you can provide the best home for your child. If you need help fighting for custody of your children in Temecula, contact the attorneys at Albrecht & Albrecht.