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The Law Offices of Daniel J. Harris, P.C. provides northern Michigan with highly qualified lawyers who specialize in family law including child custody cases. We have lawyers in Gaylord, Petoskey and surrounding areas.

Child custody lawyers help find a workable solution through the high emotions of disputes when minor children are involved. Regardless of whether the parties are married, divorced or simply stopped dating one another; it is often difficult for them to find a workable solution themselves, without the legal help. Often these cases end up in the courtroom, making matters even more stressful for the parties involved.

If you are involved in or about to become involved in a contested custody proceeding, the Court's decision will be based, in part, upon what is in the best interest of the child or children. The Child Custody Act of 1970, MCLA 722.23, Section 3, defines the best interest of the child as follows:

Section 3: "Best interests of the child" means the sum total of the following factors to be considered, evaluated, and determined by the court:

  • The love, affections, and other emotional ties existing between the parties involved and the child.
  • The capacity and disposition of the parties involved to give the child love, affection, and guidance and continuation of the education and raising of the child in its religion or creed, if any.
  • The capacity and disposition of the parties involved to provide the child with food, clothing, medical care or other remedial care recognized and permitted under the laws of this state in place of medical care, and other material needs.
  • The length of time the child has lived in a stable, satisfactory environment, and the desirability of maintaining continuity.
  • The permanence, as a family unit, of the existing or proposed custodial home or homes.
  • The moral fitness of the parties involved.
  • The mental and physical health of the parties involved.
  • The home, school, and community record of the child.
  • The reasonable preference of the child, if the court deems the child to be of sufficient age to express preference.
  • The willingness and ability of each of the parents to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing parent-child relationship between the child and the other parent.
  • Domestic Violence, regardless of whether the violence was directed against or witnessed by the child.
  • Any other factor considered by the court to be relevant to a particular child custody dispute.

The final decision of the Court will be based on a number of other factors, as well. As a Michigan family law attorney who has handled numerous child custody cases, our family law specialist understands the difficulty of the issues involved. Child custody is much more multifaceted than simply choosing who gets the child for what night of the week. Child custody cases involve unbelievable amounts of evidence, proof and testimony. In order to make certain that all of the necessary issues are raised, you need the experience of a Michigan family law attorney / child custody lawyer who knows the law on these issues.

Attorney Travis J. Groat is a Michigan family law attorney dedicated to providing you the best legal services with the personal, one-on-one dedication found only in a small law firm like The Law Offices of Daniel J. Harris, P.C. To speak with Mr. Groat about your custody case, call our offices at 231-347-4444 and schedule a Free Phone Consultation.


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If you are in need of legal advice, contact The Law Offices of Daniel J. Harris for help. Our team of experts are here to help. 

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