Preserving Families

And Protecting Assets

mother and two kids walking at sunset

Best Interest of the Child

The “best interest of the child” alone is what prevails in most custody cases. There is not a clear definition or standard  that the courts use to determine what is the best interest of the child.  What one parent feels is in the best interest is often different to the other parent, especially In  a custody case.

Courts want to hear how well or bad the child is doing in school; how the child interacts with the other parent; who has the primary  parent been in the past; are there alcohol or drug problems with either of the parents (must have evidence of this- allegations alone will not hold up); is the child going to have to move schools; is the child in therapy- if so, why and how are they doing; does the child have any disabilities or special needs; how well do parents communicate with each other and  are the parents bad-mouthing.  These are just a few things that can make up best interest. 

I have seen too many parents get on the stand and state what is better for them, what is convenient for them and how horrible the other parent is.  Courts do not want to hear this, you can often piss off the judge with this type of testimony.  Now, that doesn’t mean you can’t state your concerns, you absolutely need to do that but keep the emotional hatred out of it.  

The long and short of it is that “best interest of the child” is very arbitrary and subjective.