Do children’s wishes matter in parenting time decisions?

On Behalf of | Dec 18, 2020 | Child Custody |

There are many different factors that parents in Michigan analyze when they are making decisions regarding their children’s upbringing. They try to make the decision that they believe will be best for their children. However, their children also have opinions about what they enjoy doing or what they want to do and that will certainly be a factor that parents use when making the decisions for their children.

When parents divorce though, the dynamics of parenting change and the biggest change is that the parents will no longer be residing together and children will be splitting time between their parents’ respective homes. So, decisions need to be made about parenting time and what the schedule should be. In doing this, there are many factors will be analyzed and one of those factors could be the wishes of the children.

How children’s preference affects parenting time decisions

The law states that children’s reasonable preferences can be considered as a factor, but do not necessarily determine which parent will have more or less parenting time. In determining whether children’s preferences are reasonable, a judge will look a couple of factors.

One is the age of the children and the older the child, the more likely that their preference will factor into the overall decision. Another factor is whether children’s preferences are consistent over time or whether they fluctuate based on which parent they were just with or simply because they are mad at a parent for a minor reason. They will also try to determine whether the children understand the significance of their preferences.

There are many parents that go through divorces in Michigan each year. Each of these divorces is unique and the outcomes of them depend on the specific family dynamics of each family. One of the most contentious aspects of these divorces can be the parenting time and custody decisions. There are many factors that are analyzed when making these decisions and they can be very complicated. Experienced attorneys understand these complications and may be able to guide one through the process.