Child Custody

Child Custody

Child custody battles can be divisive and time consuming, and ultimately it’s the children involved who pay the highest cost throughout the battle. Don’t take on such a battle alone. The attorneys at Martin Foldie Law are here to ease your burden, shield your children, and help you prove to the court that you are the best choice for guardianship.    

Legal Procedure

The first step is to officially file for custody. In these situations, the custody form is filled out by a child’s parent. However, there are cases when individuals are unable to file for custody, especially if they are not blood related. In this situation, the individual will need to file an Affidavit of Parentage to establish a connection between them and the child or children in question.  
Once the form is completed, a court date will be set. During the hearing, you will present your case, answer any questions, and counter any arguments.
If you and your spouse/partner reach an agreement regarding custody, child support, and visitation, you can ask the court to confirm the arrangement. If that is not the case, a judge will set those terms for you. 
After that has been arranged, the custody case will enter the final order stage. These cases can be challenged, but only after a significant time has passed and with enough evidence to show significant change.

Types of Custody 

There are two major types of child custody arrangements in the state of Michigan:

1 – Sole Custody

This type of custody occurs when both primary physical custody and legal custody are given to one parent. This type of custody is only given when the judge decides the parents cannot work together for the benefit of their child.

2 – Joint Custody

This type of custody is when both parents have custody of the child and can be broken down into two subsections;

  • Joint Legal Custody – Joint legal custody means that parents share decision-making authority that affect the welfare of the child.
  • Joint Physical Custody – Joint physical custody means that the parents will not necessarily share decision-making authority, even though they will both care for the child. 

10 Factors Courts Consider the Child Custody in Michigan

When arguing for custody, it is important to consider what the Michigan court system deems are most important when granting custody:

1. The emotional ties the child has formed through love and affection to the individual parties. 

2. The ability of either party to provide love and affection to the child. 

3. The ability of either party to provide food, clothing, medical care, and other material needs. 

4. The length of time in which the child has lived in a healthy environment.  

5. The permanence of a family unit in the child’s home.

6. The overall morality of the individual parties. 

7. The overall mental and physical health of the parties involved.  

8. The child’s record of school and community involvement. 

9. The child’s parental preferences; provided they are at the age to express it. 

10. The ability to facilitate a relationship with the child and their relationship with the other party.