Child Custody: What is in the Best Interests of the Child?

child ccustody

Divorce and separation is a difficult situation for everyone involved, especially when there are children involved. Many couples want to have a smooth child custody discussion, and they often ask their lawyers to make their children’s needs the priority.

The child’s well-being develops through their environment — the presence and guidance of a parent or guardian are vital for the child’s welfare. Domestic issues can affect a child’s development, and adequately guiding them is crucial to help children become responsible and emotionally stable adults.

In any city in the United States, whether it’s in Los Angeles or Santa Fe, a child custody lawyer considers what both parents could provide and what is in the best interests of the child as outlined under the law. Unfortunately, some couples may not reach an amicable settlement for the children’s sake, and often they need the help of lawyers and legal firms that could mediate between former spouses.

In any legal matter involving children, the maxim has always been to consider the “best interests of the child”. According to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, the assessors must check the elements that are necessary for the proper development of a specific child. But what are the aspects lawyers, parents and guardians should consider?

The Aspirations of the Child

The assessors should interview the child and create a profile that delineates what the child aspires to do in their life. This helps the courts to decide which parent could enable the child to reach their dreams. Aspirations are vital in children’s self-esteem, and those with low aspirations often display more behavioral problems than those with high aspirations.

The Ability to Care and Provide Safety for the Child

single parent with child

The person with custody should be able to provide a caring and safe environment for the children. Often the economic and financial capability of the parent is reviewed, as children require a stable environment to feel emotionally safe and secure. If a parent has no regular job or has no proper place to raise a child, the courts will see this as a possible red flag.

Family Environment and Relations

The courts also will check the family background of each partner, as well the relationship of the child to the other relatives, such as grandparents, aunts and uncles. This is crucial as divorce requires a support system for the child, and often a stable family unit is the best support system.

The Child’s Development

Sometimes the child’s emotional and physical development are also considered. Those undergoing adolescence might need more structure, and often the parent who could provide what the child needs to transition into adulthood smoothly is the best for the child.

Different children deal with divorce in their ways, as research suggests. Children may have a hard time at school and may have problems with their peers and parents. A child may also become more expressive and may act out their anger, frustration, and hurt. They may even hide their distress and may experience depression, develop headaches and stomach aches, changes in eating, and sleeping habits. The courts will often decide whether single or joint custody will be best for the child to lessen such possible behavioral issues.

Dealing with divorce can be difficult, but understand that it can have a profound effect on the child if their needs are not considered. Parents should always consider what the best interests of their child are, but it may not sometimes agree with their ideas. Sometimes, only a court can decide who could provide what’s best for the children.

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