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The Law Office of Gregory J. Calabrese, PLLC

An Unparalleled Client Experience

Child Custody/Parenting Time Frequently Asked Questions

Q:  What child custody options exist?

A:  There are several options that a court may use to decide a child’s (or children’s) custody, as well as the nature of that custody, along with the parenting time each parent will receive.  Of course, if the parent’s agree between themselves, a court will generally agree to go along with the arrangement that the parent’s have worked out.  However, and unfortunately, that is not always the case.  Although, these arrangements are modifiable at the discretion of the court in which the original decree was granted.


Q:  What options exist for child custody/parenting time?

A:  The options that a court may choose include: joint legal custody, joint physical custody, primary physical custody, and sole physical custody.  A court may choose, based on Michigan’s Best Interest Factors, what would be the best situation for a child (or children).  This is an emotional decision and a judge is given a wide basis for discretion when determining a child’s (or children’s) custody.  It is always best to retain an attorney so that you may receive representation in your matter to help you achieve the best situation for both you and your family.


Q: What are the Michigan ‘best interest factors?’

A: The so called ‘best interest factors’ are found in MCL 722.23.  They include the following:

  1. The love, affection, and other emotional ties existing between the parties involved and the child;
  2. The capacity and disposition of the parties involved to give the child love, affection, and guidance and to continue the education and raising of the child in his or her religion or creed, if any;
  3. The capacity and disposition of the parties involved to provide the child with food, clothing, medical care or other remedial care recognized and permitted under the laws of this state in place of medical care, and other material needs;
  4. The length of time the child has lived in a stable, satisfactory environment, and the desirability of maintaining continuity;
  5. The permanence, as a family unit, of the existing or proposed custodial home or homes;
  6. The moral fitness of the parties involved;
  7. The mental and physical health of the parties involved;
  8. The home, school, and community record of the child;
  9. The reasonable preference of the child, if the court considers the child to be of sufficient age to express preference;
  10. The willingness and ability of each of the parties to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing parent-child relationship between the child and the other parent or the child and the parents;
  11. Domestic violence, regardless of whether the violence was directed against or witnessed by the child; and
  12. Any other factor considered by the court to be relevant to a particular child custody dispute.