What factors will the court consider in deciding how physical custody of the children will be divided?

The court is supposed to consider “the best interests of the child” in deciding how physical custody will be divided. Unfortunately, that means whatever the court wants it to mean. Some judges favor equally shared custody (50/50), while other judges think children should have a primary home. In general, the court will consider what the parents were doing prior to coming to court – i.e. was one parent a “stay-at-home” parent? It will also consider the parties’ work schedules, the relative stability of the parties, their living arrangement, and, when the children are older, the child’s preferences. Outcomes can vary greatly by judge.

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