Commons Myths About Child Custody and Parenting Time in Massachusetts

| May 23, 2016 | Children, Divorce |

Here are some child custody and parenting time myths most family lawyers hear about and have to dispel.

Myth: The kids get to choose who they live with as soon as they are 12 (or 14, or whatever).

Truth: I’ve always wondered where this myth started, because I’m not aware of any state that has an automatic “child decides” provision once they hit a certain age. Massachusetts definitely does not have this.
Yes, the wishes of the child is one factor the court is supposed to consider, IF the child is “of suitable age and maturity.” That factor is one of numerous factors that the court must consider in awarding joint legal decision-making or parenting time. And the child’s wishes aren’t more important than the other factors; they’re all weighted equally until the judge decides otherwise.

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