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3 factors the courts use to make custody decisions

The main question going through your head as your marriage ends is probably, "Who is going to get custody?" This concern may wrack your brain and drive you crazy. The possibility of your soon-to-be-ex getting sole custody may make you feel sad and angry.

While it is impossible to predict exactly how a custody case will turn out, it is helpful to know what the courts consider. According to Florida custody statutes, the court makes custody determinations based on the best interests and wellbeing of the child. Here are three factors that the court will take into consideration when making a decision: 

1. The mental and physical wellbeing of the parents

The Florida family courts want your children to be in the healthiest environment possible. Physical health is important because you must adhere to the needs of your kids. If one of you is too weak or incapacitated to care for your kids, it will significantly affect the outcome. The court will also analyze your mental health. If one of you deals with anger management issues or a drug addiction, the court may lean in the favor of the other parent.

2. The ability of each parent to be reasonable

Generally, courts desire children to have ongoing relationships with both parents in the form of joint custody or time-sharing. Because of this, the court will look at your willingness and demonstrated capacity to be flexible and supportive of the parent-child relationship your son or daughter has with your former partner. 

3. Stability and continuity

The court does not want to disrupt the daily lives of your children. Therefore, it will look at how long the child has lived in a particular environment. On that note, the court will also examine schooling, extracurricular activities and where each parent lives. 

This is just a snapshot of many contributing factors to custody decisions. At the end of the day, the best thing for you to do is be supportive of your kids and fight for your interests with patience. 

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