How Do I File a Child Custody Claim?
One of the most urgent issues that are closely tied with a divorce is custody of a child. Family law lawyers know how a divorce can cause tensions to flare, especially concerning arguments about which parent deserves custody. Parents may disagree on a number of issues, such as who the child gets to reside with, visitation rights, and the amount of financial support. Amidst the conflict, a lawyer can act as an objective third-party who will listen to the issues and needs of their clients so they can provide legal advice and propose reasonable solutions. Given the deeply personal and emotional nature of child custody cases, they understand that resolutions need to be swiftly identified. If you are a parent who is in need of legal advice, schedule a consultation with an experienced child custody lawyer in your area.
How is Child Custody Determined?
As a trusted and admired child custody lawyer such as one from the Law Office of Daniel J. Wright can tell you, the state’s decisions regarding child custody are based on a number of factors, which do not include bias against a particular parent. Though Maryland law usually presumes to grant equal shared custody to each parent when appropriate, ultimately they will consider the best interests of a child.
Factors that a judge will review to determine a decision in a child custody case include:
- The child’s age
- The child’s needs
- The child’s physical and mental health
- Each parent’s willingness to care for the child
- The child’s own wishes
- The strength of the relationship between the child and each parent
- The stability of a parent’s earning capacity
- Whether a parent is mentally fit
- Whether a parent has had a history of substance abuse
- Whether a parent has had a history of domestic violence
- Whether a parent has a stable place of residence
- Whether a parent has a criminal record
What Are The Requirements for Filing a Claim?
Anyone who is under 18 years of age is legally considered a child, however each state has their own variation of child custody laws. The basic requirements for filing for child custody include:
- The child must have resided in the state for a set minimum length of time, typically 6 months
- The parents should have some connection to the state, such as school or work
Each child custody case is unique. Contact a top child custody lawyer who will use their skills and full resources to fight for your parental rights.