When you cannot agree on your child custody matters in a divorce, the court will have to make the decisions for you. The court takes this responsibility seriously because it understands the decisions it makes will impact your children and family for years to come.

According to the Mississippi Bar, the most important thing to the court is what is best for your children. However, the court does have certain presumptions that it uses to determine what arrangement would be the best for your children.

Joint custody

The court prefers above all else that you share in the custody of your children. Ideally, you would split time with your children so that they could develop meaningful relationships with both of you. The court wants the children to have adequate time with you both as well.

Domestic violence

If you or your spouse has a history of domestic violence, which includes even one incident, the court presumes that the guilty parent is not suitable as a guardian for the children. For example, if your spouse has a domestic violence charge, the court will likely award you custody of the children. It may offer supervised visitation or put other restrictions on your spouse to allow him or her to regain custody rights.

Equality

The court does not give favor to either parent in a custody matter due to gender. The law states mothers and fathers have equal rights to their children. The court will not consider gender when making orders pertaining to custody despite popular belief that courts tend to prefer mothers over fathers.