The Nevada Revised Statutes provide clear guidelines for child custody and other matters regarding the best interest of a child (or children) in a case of separation or divorce:
NRS 125C.0035 Best interests of child: Joint physical custody; preferences:
The primary consideration of the court in any hearing to determine physical custody of a minor child is what best serves the interests of the child. If the court determines joint physical custody may be the best thing for the child in question, the court can grant joint physical and joint legal custody to both parties. This is the preferred order and the Court generally starts from this position.
From a legal standpoint, preference cannot be given to either parent simply because they may be the mother or the father.
Unless a particular circumstance arises, the court will always award physical custody of a minor child in the following order: to both parties jointly or to either parent depending upon the situation; to a person or persons in whose home the child has been living and where the child has had a healthy and stable environment; to any blood relative within the fifth degree that the court finds suitable, whether or not he or she lives within Nevada; to any other person or persons the court finds suitable to provide appropriate care and guidance for the child.
If the court does not issue joint physical custody of a child after either parent has applied for that outcome the court must state the reason in its order in the text of the final decision.
What constitutes the best interests of the child will be as follows: if the child is of sufficient age, his or her wishes as to preference to custodian; any nomination of a guardian for the child by either parent; which parent would be most likely to allow the child to frequently visit and maintain a continuing relationship with the noncustodial parent; the level of conflict between co-parents; the ability of co-parents to meet the needs of the child; mental and physical health of co-parents; physical, developmental, and emotional needs of the child; the nature of the relationship of the child with each parent; the ability of the child to maintain a connected relationship with siblings, if any; any history of parental abuse or neglect of child or any siblings; whether any incidents of domestic violence have occurred against child, co-parent, or any other siblings; and whether either co-parent or any other person seeking physical custody committed an act of abduction against the child or any other child.
Clearly any parent in a healthy frame of mind will want what’s best for his or her child, regardless of their relationship with their co-parent. In order to determine what your child’s best interest may be, you need the best legal representation you can get to ensure your child has the chance to grow up in as healthy an environment as possible. I am an expert in this difficult area of law and can work to ensure we obtain the best result for you and your children.
If you are involved in a divorce or child custody dispute, call me now at 702-383-0090! Douglas C. Crawford, Esq.