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Best Interests of the Child Analysis Under Maryland Law

Maryland Best Interests of the Child Custody Factors 

Understanding Maryland's Child Custody Factors

In Maryland, child custody decisions are guided by numerous factors that ensure the child's best interests are prioritized. A Maryland Family Lawyer can provide valuable insight into how these factors apply to your specific situation. These factors originated from significant case law, including Montgomery County v. Sanders, and continue to evolve as new cases are adjudicated.

Key Custody Factors Considered by Courts

Maryland courts consider a variety of factors when determining custody arrangements. These include the fitness of the parents, the ability to maintain natural family relationships, and the child's preferences, among others. An experienced Custody Lawyer can help articulate how each of these factors might influence the outcome of your custody case.

Factors Specific to Joint Custody

Joint custody decisions hinge on additional factors, as outlined in Taylor v. Taylor. These include the parents' ability to communicate, their willingness to share custody, and the logistical feasibility of the arrangement. Family Law Firms often stress the importance of demonstrating a cooperative spirit and stability in joint custody cases.

Practical Considerations for Custody Analysis

When courts analyze custody scenarios, practical questions are essential to decision-making. These questions focus on each parent's ability to provide a stable environment, adhere to discipline, support academic needs, and communicate effectively for joint custody. A thorough evaluation by a Family Law Firm can help address these questions comprehensively in court.

  • Who can maintain a stable, clean and safe home environment?
  • Who can provide proper discipline and consistent rules?
  • Who can meet the child's academic needs, including a consistent school
  • Who can meet the child's physical and emotional needs
  • Who can preserve Natural Family Relationships that already exist?
  • Who has the most expansive Parental Support System?
  • Who has the time to care for the child, considering work schedules? 
  • Do the parents communicate well enough for joint custody? 
  • Do the parents live close enough for joint custody? 
  • What does the Best Interest Attorney recommend? 
  • What does the Child's therapist recommend
  • What does the Custody Evaluator recommend?
  • What does the Home Study say? 
  • What was the outcome of any DSS Investigation? 
  • Is either parent impaired due to substance abuse? 


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