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What will a judge consider when deciding a child custody dispute?

Child custody disputes can be the most emotionally difficult conflicts that arise in family law. In some situations, both the mother and father want to be the parent with primary physical custody of their children.

It’s then that a Clark County judge will listen to arguments made by attorneys for the two parents and then decide on a custody arrangement. These situations can prompt many to ask what a judge will consider when deciding a child custody dispute in Las Vegas.


“The sole consideration of the court is the best interest of the child,” Nevada states clearly in law. That doesn’t mean the court will disregard what parents want or what your child wants, but it does mean that the court is going to do what it determines is in the best interests of your child or children.

The state lists factors that judges consider while determining the best interests of a child, including the following:

  • Child’s wishes: when your son or daughter is determined to be able “to form an intelligent preference” about custody, those wishes will be considered.
  • Allowing the other: the court will try to determine which parent is more likely to allow the child to continue to have frequent visits and a good relationship with the parent who is not awarded custody.
  • Conflict level: the judge will try to figure out just how deep the conflict over custody is between you and your ex, as well as the respective abilities of the parents to cooperate with each other for the good of the child.
  • Relationship: the court will try to figure out what type of relationship each parent has with the child, as well as if there is a history of child abuse or parental neglect.

Other factors are considered as well, of course. An experienced Las Vegas child custody attorney can discuss your situation, what you desire as a parent and help you protect the best interests of your child as you go through a divorce and child custody dispute.

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