What Factors Affect the Best Interests of the Children During a Divorce?

If you are preparing for divorce and children are involved, one of your most important concerns is the well-being of your children. Being objective and determining what will be best for the children isn’t always easy. You and your spouse will no doubt have differing views about how to parent during and after the divorce. Many factors will be considered by the court before the issues pertaining to their physical, financial, and emotional upbringing will be decided. It is vital for you as a parent to review your own personal position and understand all the aspects that will influence the formulation of the best co-parenting plans for your family.

How Will Your Current Situation Be Viewed by the Courts?

Your current and past situation and relationship with your children gives the courts insight into your parenting style, involvement, and availability. Ask yourself the following questions to get an idea of how the court will view your current situation:

  • Are you well aware of all the aspects of your children’s life and daily routine?
  • How were parental responsibilities divided before divorce proceedings began?
  • Do the children live in a secure, acceptable environment?
  • What are the ages and current developmental stages of the children?
  • Do the children have any special needs?
  • What is the current school and community record of the child?
  • What is the mental, physical, and moral fitness of both you and the children’s other parent, and how well do you communicate with each other?
  • Do you have the ability to accurately determine and appropriately act upon the needs of the child?
  • Are the children mature enough to express reasonable preferences about any of the aspects of where they reside or visitation schedules?
  • Is there any evidence of substance abuse, child abuse, child neglect, child abandonment, domestic violence, or sexual violence?

What Plans Do You Have For Your Children?

The court will review what you see as appropriate plans for your children and consider the logistics and practicalities involved including:

  • How will you allocate the parental responsibilities between you and your ex-spouse?
  • Can this be done while still providing a consistent routine for the child?
  • What is the distance between your home and your spouse’s home, and what the travel time for the children?
  • How will you and your ex-spouse be involved in the child’s school, extracurricular activities, and the various other aspects of their lives?
  • Are your plans feasible considering work schedules and commitments?

What About Emotional Health?

Both parents emotional health is also a consideration when making decisions about co-parenting. The court will want to assured:

  • Will both parents encourage a close parent-child relationship?
  • Will time-sharing schedules and parental responsibilities be honored?
  • Will parents be reasonable and flexible about making adjustments if necessary?
  • Are both parents willing to be unified on major issues?
  • Do parents understand the importance of not speaking negatively about each other and not expose children to adult conversations involving the divorce?
  • Is there any evidence that false information was knowingly provided to the court?

It is Always About the “Best Interest of the Children”

Courts will do everything in their power to see that children’s emotional and physical health is never placed in jeopardy due to divorce. That is not easy and it takes a good long look at all the facts to determine what is best for a child. Every divorce and parenting situation is unique. Meet with an attorney from Allen & Roig, LLP. We will discuss the factors that affect the best interest of your children and discuss your rights and responsibilities so that you can play the most appropriate and loving role in their lives. Our expertise in family law in San Antonio, TX will ensure that your interests and the interests of your children are protected in the best possible way throughout the divorce process. Call us today!