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Missouri Divorce Custody


According to Missouri divorce child custody laws, the best interests of the child are not to be compromised while awarding custody of the child. No parent would be preferred simply on the basis of his/her gender while ruling for child custody. Following divorce custody guidelines are considered while awarding custody of the child:
  • The parent who bonds well with the child is preferred in such cases. To whom does the child turn to when he needs emotional support, with which parent the child feels most comfortable and secure etc are considered by the judges dealing Missouri divorce custody cases.

  • The actual needs of the child in terms of his/her educational requirements, medical needs; social and religious wishes are assessed by the courts. The parent who fits the bill gets the custody of the child.

  • The wishes of the parents in terms of child care and rearing are also considered by the courts. If the judges find the wishes of a parent to be more in the line of suiting the best interests of the child, then the divorce child custody is awarded to that parent.

  • Mental health and physical fitness of the parents are also considered while awarding custody of the child. While handling Missouri divorce custody cases, judges try to look into the fitness of the parents to raise the child.

  • The parent who can offer a stable community, in which the child has grown up for a considerable period of time, is likely to get the custody of the child. By community, courts specify, teachers, friends and child care systems to which the child is used to.

  • Missouri courts also try to determine if there are any police records of either parent regarding child abuse or child neglect or domestic violence and any kind of physical brutality. The parent who is guilty of such crimes where the child is a victim or a witness, then the custody is not awarded to him/her.

  • Missouri courts try to award joint custody of the child to both the courts so that the child gets the love and care of his/her parents. In such cases, the physical custody may be awarded to one parent while the non-custodial parent gets the visitation rights.

  • The non-custoidal parent has access to the day-to-day time of the child or is allowed to meet on weekends or to take the child out on trips in vacations or summers. Such joint custody in Missouri divorce custody cases is awarded if it is in the best interests of the child and does not have any detrimental effect on the child and his growth.

  • Non-parent custody is the term referred to granting custody of the child to adults who are not the parents such as grandparents, or some uncle or aunt. Such cases are very rare, but if it is proved that the parents are unfit to take care of the child due to physical and mental incapability, Missouri divorce custody battles are settled by awarding the child to the non-parent who has a bond with the child. That non-parent should have been the guardian of the child for a minimum of six months.

  • Missouri child support laws specify that financial support is to be extended to meet the growing financial needs of the child till that child reaches the age of 18 years. The amount of child support that needs to be given by the parents is calculated by “income shares model” and both the incomes of the parents are pooled in to arrive at a child support figure.


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