Of the many factors that need to be evaluated before child custody can be decided, financial stability certainly seems like it should be an important one. However, finances alone do not determine how good of a fit a home will actually be for a child. The court also has to take a closer look at other details to make a well-informed decision. So if you are not the richer spouse, do not despair and think that you cannot win this argument. A Memphis, Tennessee child custody lawyer is ready to help you fight for the best possible outcome.
What Else is Important Aside from Financial Stability?
If you and your former spouse can both offer financial stability, the court will look at other factors to determine which home would be best for the child. They could consider things like:
- How close each home is to the child’s school
- The fitness of each parent
- The work obligations of each parent
- Any history of domestic violence or drug abuse
- How stable each home environment would be
- The child’s relationship with both parents
- The child’s relationship with siblings or step-siblings
Can a Child Choose Which Parent to Go With?
When a child gets old enough, the court can actually ask for their opinion on which parent they want to live with. In Tennessee, the court will usually start to consider the opinion of children who have reached the age of 12 or older. If there are multiple children involved in a custody dispute, the older children will have their opinions weighed more heavily.
Asking younger children for their preferences can be more difficult. They might not quite understand what the question is asking, or one parent could take the opportunity to coach their child on the “right” answer.
Can Child Custody Agreements Be Changed Later?
In some cases, a parent who was once unable to offer financial stability or anything else needed by a child turns their life around. Whether they escape homelessness or work through an addiction issue, someone who changes their circumstances so drastically may want to amend a child custody agreement. They must have some real proof that things have changed when they petition the court though, or their request is unlikely to go anywhere.
What Can a Lawyer Do For Me?
A seasoned family attorney can help you navigate this difficult process and make the best possible argument for child custody. Whether you need to gather evidence or make changes that show that you would be a better custodial parent, your attorney can guide you on the right path and help you with any paperwork or legal questions that arise.
Talk to Our Legal Team
If you are involved in a custody battle, do not go it alone. Contact Rice Law and talk to an experienced, compassionate family lawyer who is ready to assist you. Schedule a consultation today.