One of the biggest struggles during divorce is deciding who gets custody of the child or children. Some parents may feel anxious that they’ll lose custody over their children because they’re the lower income parent.
There’s no reason to panic, however. Though money matters may be a factor to consider in a child custody battle, courts believe that no amount of money can substitute quality parental care. In deciding child custody cases, they always take the child’s best interests into consideration.
It’s about Financial Stability
Judges usually consider the best interests of the child when deciding custody. This includes the child’s wishes, parent-child relationships, and finances. This doesn’t necessarily mean, however, that the richer parent has an advantage over the parent who earns less. The court looks into financial stability as a more reliable basis for providing custody.
For example, a parent with financial issues, such as gambling or loan debt, may not gain custody even if they do earn more. Parents with a stable income and who have demonstrated their financial responsibility in the past have a higher chance of getting custody.
When Income and Responsibility Clash
Apart from seeing to the basic needs of the children, a parent should be able to provide a stable routine for them. So, judges will examine a parents’ work schedule and their availability in the household. For example, children with medical and educational needs require regular support from their parents to cater to their needs on a day-to-day basis.
Willingness of Parents to Compromise
Judges are intent on providing solutions that serve the best interests of the child. Parents who cooperate and share the court’s view will most likely have an edge during the custody dispute. In contrast, parents who display antagonistic behavior or bad-mouth their partners are not endearing themselves to the judge.
The settlement of a divorce comes with the responsibility of providing child support, which also entails some form of compromise between parents. While child support is not something every parent wants to pay, there could be some legal consequences if a parent refuses to do so. Spouses with uncooperative partners may consult a child support attorney if such a case happens.
More money does not necessarily make a better parent. It also isn’t the ultimate determinant to how a custody battle will be resolved. While material things are important, there is still no substitute for a parent that can provide for the emotional and financial needs of their child.