How does the Court determine Parenting Time?
In addition to the "Best Interest Factors" in MCL 722.23, MCL 722.27a(7) also sets forth nine (9) factors that more specifically can guide the Court on the frequency, duration and types of parenting time that should be granted based on the facts of your specific case.
It should be noted that you should always discuss parenting time disputes with an attorney to protect you and your child's rights. An attorney can help you plan your custody case and know what to expect based on the county in which you live.
Parenting Time Factors include:
(a) The existence of any special circumstances or needs of the child. Is the child special needs? Are both parents able to handle any needs of the child or is one parent more suited to handle the child than the other?
(b) Whether the child is a nursing child less than 6 months of age, or less than
1 year of age if the child receives substantial nutrition through nursing. While this is a factor, it is a harsh reality that today, few courts consider nursing to be a barrier to separating a Mother and baby so that a Father can bond and have parenting time with his minor child. Discuss this with an attorney if this applies to your case so you can know what to expect.
(c) The reasonable likelihood of abuse or neglect of the child during parenting
time. Has either parent ever had an abuse or neglect case opened against them?
(d) The reasonable likelihood of abuse of a parent resulting from the exercise
of parenting time. The court should examine a parent's past ability to parent and any potential abuse a child could be exposed to.
(e) The inconvenience to, and burdensome impact or effect on, the child of
traveling for purposes of parenting time. How far apart do the parents live? How will the child travel? How long will the travel be for the minor child and how often?
(f) Whether a parent can reasonably be expected to exercise parenting time in
accordance with the court order. Has the parent always exercised scheduled parenting time? Are they consistently late or do they skip parenting time?
(g) Whether a parent has frequently failed to exercise reasonable parenting
time. The court will not grant more parenting time to a parent that has not exercised all of the parenting time they have previously been provided.
(h) The threatened or actual detention of the child with the intent to retain or
conceal the child from the other parent or from a third person who has legal
custody. A custodial parent’s temporary residence with the child in a domestic
violence shelter shall not be construed as evidence of the custodial parent’s
intent to retain or conceal the child from the other parent. Has one parent kept the child from the other without cause?
(i) Any other relevant factors. Are there other considerations the Court should consider in your particular case? Discuss with an attorney to determine a plan and to protect your rights.
Attorney Allison Greenlee Korr handles cases in Kalamazoo, Battle Creek and all surrounding counties, call today for a consultation. 269-381-4471