One of the initial tasks in a divorce case is preparing a motion for temporary child custody. Typically, the motion is filed with the court either at the same time a divorce petition is submitted or shortly thereafter. There are a number of factors a person needs to bear in mind when preparing a motion for temporary child custody.
Best Interests of a Child Standard
When preparing a motion for temporary child custody, a party needs to take into account what is known as the “best interests of the child” standard. This is the metric by which a court makes a decision regarding temporary custody based on what will be in the best interests of a child.
At the heart of any temporary child custody motion must be the contention that the proposed arrangement is in the best interests of the subject minor. In other words, the case must be made that awarding custody to the maker of the motion will best serve the child.
Commonly Considered Factors
In reviewing a motion for temporary child custody, with an eye toward the child’s best interests, a judge considers a number of factors. A key consideration is which parent historically has been the primary caretaker of the child.
A court will look at the overall physical and mental health of the parents and of the child. The residential situation of the parties will also be reviewed by the court in its consideration of temporary custody
Importance of Primary Caretaker History
When determining a temporary custody order, the matter of who has been the historical caretaker tends to be paramount to the court. Stability is important in the life of a child, and is best maintained by leaning toward awarding custody to the historical primary caretaker, at least temporarily, during the course of the divorce proceedings.
Retain Legal Counsel
The best course to take to ensure that a parent’s interests are protected in regard to temporary custody, as well as other divorce-related issues, is to retain an experienced divorce attorney. A divorce lawyer understands the process, procedure, and nuances of pursuing a motion for temporary custody. A lawyer knows not only how to prepare a motion but also how to pursue custody in a court. A divorce lawyer typically schedules a no-obligation, no-cost initial consultation to discuss a marriage dissolution case, including temporary orders.