When you are going through a divorce and you share children with the other person, a judge often decides what kind of custody arrangements will occur. Typically, this involves calculating the “best interest” of a child. With that said, understanding what “best interest” is not always straightforward.
In terms of official definitions, there is no determinant of what this qualification means. Rather, the court takes multiple factors into consideration when making time arrangements. In all cases, the judge tries to choose the route that will best serve the developmental needs of the child. Here are three ways a court may determine that.
When it comes to effective parenting practices, studies show that parents who respond to their children in a predictable way tend to raise children who display better social and emotional outcomes. If you are regularly present in your child’s life and family can count on you to show up for him or her, it shows that you are a reliable parent.
2. Warmth and sensitivity
Another factor that the judge will consider is how you treat your son or daughter. Do you have a close relationship? Are you sensitive to his or her needs? How does he or she respond around you? These are all things the court will pay attention to.
3. Response to health and safety needs
Children rely on their parents to keep them safe. Because of this, the court needs to know that you prioritize the health and safety needs of your child. In the past, how have you responded to medical emergencies? Make sure you have documentation to support your involvement in your son or daughter’s life.
While there are numerous factors that can determine a child’s best interest, these are the types of considerations that a judge will make.