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Child Custody Laws for PA: How Do They Affect Your Case?
Child custody cases in Pennsylvania are determined by applying 16 different factors as set forth in the custody statute. If parents cannot agree on a custody arrangement, then the court applies these factors to make a determination. If you are involved in a child custody dispute, you should seek representation from the Lebanon, Pennsylvania family lawyers at Henry & Beaver, LLP who have decades of experience in this area.
How do PA child custody laws affect your case?
In every child custody case, the court is required to determine the best interest of the child by considering all relevant factors, including the factors listed specifically in the statute. Generally, both parents in a custody dispute are initially presumed to be able to appropriately parent their children. This presumption can be overcome, however, if circumstances suggest otherwise.
In assessing the best interest standard, the court is required to consider several factors, including:
- Wishes of the parents
- Wishes of the child, depending on the child’s age and maturity
- Need to promote stability and continuity
- Character and circumstances of persons involved
- Domestic violence
The parties are permitted to present testimony and evidence related to these issues, but procedural and evidentiary rules apply. Failure to comply with these rules and procedures could result in evidence not being considered by the judge.
Why is it important to contact an experienced family law attorney rather than trying to handle a child custody case on your own?
While a person has the right to represent themselves in a child custody case, they are held to the same standard as an attorney and are expected to understand the child custody laws and comply with the rules of civil procedure. Because of this, most people will be better served by having experienced legal counsel.
The dedicated Lebanon, Pennsylvania family lawyers at Henry & Beaver can represent parents, grandparents, and family members in court and will advocate for the child custody arrangement you are seeking. They will effectively advise you about Pennsylvania custody laws and how they apply to your case.
The family law attorneys at Henry & Beaver have successfully represented countless parents, grandparents, and family members in child custody actions. If you are involved in a child custody case, contact Henry & Beaver at (717) 274-3644 to schedule a consultation today.