Child Custody

Michigan’s Custody Act establishes the criteria and procedures for courts and attorneys to resolve child custody disputes.  In each county, it is the circuit court within that county that is able to hear these cases.

Michigan Child Custody Act

Under the Child Custody Act, the court may award custody to one or more of the parties involved (usually parents) or to a third person and make orders to provide for the child’s support.  Additionally, the court may modify or amend its judgments or orders until the child attains the age of 18.  This is important for persons with children to understand, because child custody can be an issue that changes not only during a divorce, but may change over time.

Modification Of A Child Custody Order

A court in Michigan will only modify a child custody order if there is clear and convincing evidence that there has been a meaningful change of circumstances and a modification of custody will serve the best interests of the child.

Relocation And Child Custody In Michigan

In Michigan, a parent entitled to custody or visitation may either move from the state of Michigan or 100 miles from the parent’s current location only if the parent obtains permission from a family court judge, unless:

  • The child’s other parent agrees to the move
  • The judge granted sole custody to one parent
  • The parents were already living 100 miles apart prior to the intended relocation
  • The move would allow the child’s parent’s residences to be closer than they were prior to the move

If a judge or parent approves a move, the relocating parent must provide the court with:

  • The parent’s new address, and
  • A revised visitation/custody schedule

If a judge must approve a move, the relocating parent should be prepared to provide valid reasons for the move, including but not limited to better employment or being closer to family members.

For more information about child custody in Michigan, contact attorney Barton W. Morris, Jr., now at (248) 541-2600 for an immediate consultation.