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Divorce & Family Law This forum is for discussing any of the legal issues involved in your divorce.

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Old 04-05-2006, 09:06 PM
FPI FPI is offline
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Default When Can a child have a say?

I was wondering when would the court listen to the wishes of the children? My daughter is going to be 10 years old this coming August, she has made it clear that she would like to spend 50 percent of her time with me. My little girl is very bright and feels it's not fair that mom sees her most of the time.
Is there anything I can do to try to grant my child what she wants.
I donot have a seperation agreement yet, my children have been residing with thier mom for the last year, we are still in the legal battle.
Old 04-05-2006, 09:40 PM
logicalvelocity logicalvelocity is offline
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Although your child is nearly 10 years of age, I believe the courts would not give much weight to your daughter's views. The best way to get your daughter's views put forth is have a 3rd party parental assessment completed or have the office of the children's lawyer to represent your child and her respective views. If the office of the children's lawyer will not intervene, hire your child an independent lawyer. It is a crap shoot and would depend highly on the Judge of the day. One thing the courts would look at is how much have you influenced the child to come to this view.

As you child's age increases, greater weight would be given to your child's views. Remember children can withdrawal from parental control at the age of 16. If they are free to withdrawal, they are free to choose where they want to live. This in itself is a inferred statement that children at this age under custody and access/contact orders are somewhat ineffective unless the child had a disability.
Old 04-07-2006, 03:16 PM
applepie applepie is offline
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Originally Posted by logicalvelocity
One thing the courts would look at is how much have you influenced the child to come to this view.
Yes, this is exactly what will be running through the judge's mind when/if your daughter gets to speak. How have you influenced this decision. LogicalVelocity has some good advice. Seek independant counseling/attorney for your daughter to try and rule out any interference from you.

One other way is to have your daughter express her wishes to her mother. *shrug* Couldn't hurt...Well hopefully not.
Old 04-09-2006, 11:30 AM
Mikesgal Mikesgal is offline
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I have been doing some extensive research lately on family law and in the one book I was just reading, and just went back to to re-affirm myself it states that: The courts usually prefer to maintain the status quo, and will aften leave the child in the home where he or she has had the most recent and longest continued residence. They will also pay a great deal of attention to the stated wishes of a teenager about which parent he or she would like to live with, because teenagers are capable of moving themselves to the home they prefer. Courts also avoid separating brothers and sisters unless there are very good reasons, such as a history of living separately or a large age difference between siblings.....hope this helps
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