MCL 722.23 describes a number of factors that constitute the "best Interest of of the child, definition." These factors are taken into consideration in certain custody proceedings, always discuss with an attorney whether these factors will apply to your situation. The factors are listed below but it's important to remember that "winning" the majority of these factors in a custody determination is not determinative.
a) The love, affection, and other emotional ties existing between the parties involved and the child.
b) The capacity and disposition of the parties involved to give the child love, affection, and guidance to continue the education and raising of the child in their religion or creed, if any.
c) The capacity and disposition of the parties involved to provide the children 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.
d) The length of time the child has lived in a stable, satisfactory environment, and the desirability of maintaining continuity.
e) The permanence, as a family unit, of the existing or proposed custodial home or homes.
f) Moral fitness of the parties.
g) The mental and physical health of the parties involved.
h) Home, school and community record of the child.
i) Reasonable preference of the child if the Court deems the child to be of sufficient age to express a preference. (see "Can my child talk to the Judge?")
j) 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.
k) Domestic violence, regardless of whether the violence was directed against or witnessed by the child.
l) Any other factor considered by the Court to be relevant to a particular child custody dispute.
Attorney Allison Greenlee Korr handles cases in the counties of Kalamazoo, Calhoun, Van Buren and St. Joseph, call today for a consultation. 269-381-4471