The Preference of the Child in Child Custody CasesPosted by: Kim Sears | Posted on: March 10, 2021
Is there a certain age at which a child in a Rhode Island child custody or divorce case can choose which parent they want to live with?Learn more by visiting [child custody attorney scottsdale az]
In a Rhode Island Child Custody Case, there is no fixed age when a child can choose to live with their mother or father. In reality, the child is not allowed to make the decision in theory. In fact, older children have a major influence on a Rhode Island Family Court Judge’s child custody decisions. The Court decides on child custody in the “best interest of the child” when making a decision.
A Rhode Island Family Court Judge may recognise the child’s choice as one of the factors in deciding the child’s best interests. Please see the list below for all of the factors considered by the Rhode Island Family Court when determining child custody.
When an older child, such as a 15, 16, or 17-year-old, expresses a preference to the Judge, Court Investigator, or Guardian ad Litem, the judge will usually respect the child’s wishes.
There are few exceptions to the law that an older child’s decision is final. In certain situations, despite his age, the child does not understand what is best for him. The judge will refuse the child’s request if the child does not have a valid reason for his decision. The Judge will refuse the request if the other parent is not a fit and proper person to have custody of the infant. If the parent with whom the child wishes to live has a drug or alcohol addiction or a criminal record, the Judge can refuse the child’s appeal. When a child has behavioural problems and is simply rebelling against the imposition of rules and structure, RI Family Court Judges are reluctant to alter placement.
In Child Visitation cases in Rhode Island, children can also have a say. Children may have a say in whether or not overnight visiting is acceptable. Children also have a say in whether visitation should be monitored or unsupervised, as well as how long it should last. When a parent with physical custody files a motion to move out of state, the children can have a say.
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