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Factors Considered When Awarding Custody

May 17, 2018

The Pennsylvania legislature has specified certain things that the Judge must consider when deciding custody. In any form of custody, the Court is required to set forth the “15” factors which led to their decision. They are as follows:


1. Which party is more likely to encourage and permit frequent and continuing contact between the child and another party.


2. The present and past abuse committed by a party or a member of the party’s household.


3. The parental duties performed by each party on behalf of the child.


4. The need for stability and continuity in the child’s education, family life and community life.


5. The availability of extended family.


6. The child’s sibling’s relationships.


7. The well-reasoned preference of the child, based on the child’s maturity and judgment.


8. The attempts of a parent to turn the child against the other parent.


9. Which party is more likely to maintain a loving, stable, consistent and nurturing relationship with the child adequate for the child’s emotional needs.


10. Which party is more likely to attend to the daily physical, emotional, developmental, educational and special needs of the child.


11. The proximity of the residence of the parties.


12. Each party’s availability to care for the child or ability to make appropriate childcare arrangements.


13. The level of conflict between the parties and the ability of the parties to cooperate with one another.


14. The history of drug or alcohol abuse of a party or member of a party’s household. 15. The mental and physical condition of a party or member of a party’s household.

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