When individuals choose to divorce from one other, they don’t always realize the emotional and psychological burdens placed on their children. Separation from either parent during and after a divorce can negatively impact a child’s psyche, and can cause emotional problems in the future. Child Custody in Minnesota is a sensitive topic, and the best interests of the children are paramount.

Assessing what the “best interests” of any individual is a sensitive subject. Under Minnesota Statute 518.17, the family law system assesses 13 different factors when identifying a child’s best interest, including:

1. Parents’ wishes for the child in regard to custody
2. The child’s reasonable preference, if the child is deemed of an appropriate age by the court
3. The child’s primary caretaker
4. The level of intimacy between the parents and the child
5. The relationship between the child and parents, child and siblings, and other individuals who can affect the child’s best interests
6. The child’s adjustment to home, school and community
7. The period of time a child has lived in a stable environment and the ability to maintain continuity
8. The permanence of the existing / proposed custodial home
9. The mental and physical health of all individuals involved
10. The ability and disposition of the custodial parties to give the child love, affection and guidance, as well as to continue educating and raising the child in the child’s culture, religion or creed
11. The child’s cultural background
12. The effect on the child of the actions of an abuser (if related to a domestic case)
13. The disposition of each parent to encourage and permit frequent and continuing contact by the other parent with the child (unless related to domestic cases)

If the parents cannot reach an agreement on their own, typically an investigation will take place to assess these factors, and to see if joint custody is appropriate for the parents and the child. This is why it is important to discuss your legal situation with an experienced Minnesota divorce attorney. Arnold, Rodman and Kretchmer, PLLC lawyers stay up-to-date with all of Minnesota – including Minneapolis and St. Paul – family law orders, including child custody and joint custody after divorce.

Call Arnold, Rodman and Kretchmer, PLLC today at 952-955-8008, or email info@arkmn.com to schedule your consultation. Speak with top Family Law and Child Custody Attorneys in Minnesota.