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Child Custody Family Law in New Mexico

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Child Custody Family Law in New Mexico

One of the hardest agreements to reach in a divorce case is regarding the children. Where will they live? How much time will they spend with each parent? How will holidays be divided? Family courts across America handle these child custody matters, which are different from child support agreements because the amount of child support determined can vary based on the custody agreement. So unfortunately, parents tend to fight over the money, rather than the needs of their children.

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The courts in New Mexico base their custody agreements on the best interests of the child. Most states follow this standard. How New Mexico differs is that at 14 years of age, a court takes into consideration the wants of the child vs the best interest standard.

For children under the age of 14 these factors come into play:

• The physical and mental health of everyone involved.
• The parents’ and child’s wants for the custody outcome.
• The relationship and interaction between both parents and the child and both parents, siblings, and other persons who greatly affect the child’s best interest.
• The adjustment to his or her home, school and community that they will have to make.

There are some factors that can’t be considered such as race or gender is no longer a determining factor as to where or with whom the child will live. In some cases parents are allowed to come up with their own parenting plan that determines custody, but the court still has to approve it. If the agreement isn’t in the best interest of the child, the court can denied it. Also, if a custody is contested, the court will order mediation.

Common grounds for seeking a modification can include:

Courts recognize that changing a child’s routine can be a difficult adjustment for a child to make. The utmost care must be taken when considering a child’s changing best interests.

• Some Parental relocation.
• Remarriage.
• Domestic violence or child abuse.
• Drug or alcohol abuse by a parent.
• A parent’s new work schedule.
• A medical emergency affecting a parent’s ability to provide care.

As a board-certified family law specialist, PJ Hartman has proven skills at helping parents resolve modification disputes that keep the child’s best interests as the top priority. PJ Hartman believes in the benefits of mediation and collaborative divorce, and can help you find solutions that work. I am ready to guide you through the legal process of modifying a custody or visitation arrangement.

Whether you’re just beginning your child custody case or need a modification due to a change in circumstances, it’s best to speak to an experienced New Mexico Family Lawyer 505-247-3335 or toll free at 888-710-0130.