DADI Blog

South Dakota Child Custody

Posted by admin on April 27th, 2006

South Dakota does not have any specific factors set when it comes to child custody only that sole or joint child custody will be awarded by the discretion of the court on behalf of the best interest of the children involved in the child custody case.

Joint custody is what most of the states now desire in child custody cases, this gives both parents the same rights to rearing their children and to stay involved in all aspects of their children lives. This can be done if both parents are willing to set their differences aside and work together to ensure that they will both continue to have a loving and caring relationship with the children without any interference from the other parent.

The court will listen to and look at all evidence that is presented to ensure that the children’s best interest is at the root of any parenting plan and that neither parent has been threatened to agree with the plan.

Other factors the court will look at include:

* The wishes of the parents as to who has custody or if they desire joint custody.

* The wishes of the children if they are of sufficient age and intelligence.

* The relationship the children have with both parents, their siblings and others in the home.

* The home environment.

* The adjustment the children now have in their school, home and community.

* The physical and mental health of everyone in the home.

* Domestic abuse of any type.

* How close the parents live to one another especially in cases when joint custody is feasible.

* The main caretaker of the children.

* How much time each parent can actually spend with the children instead of seeking child care.

* Which parent is financial capable of rearing the children.

* No preference will be made concerning the sex of the parent as to which parent would be more suited in any child custody case.

As with all states, custody is not an award or a punishment, the court will under their own discretion decide what type of custody whether joint or sole, and what would be in the best interest of the children.

Even in cases of joint custody, one parent may still have to pay support to the other parent to aid in the rearing of their children. This will also be looked at by the court.

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