Do mothers have an advantage in custody proceedings?

Before there is a court order, who has custody? What factors does a court consider in making a custody decision? Do mothers have an advantage in custody proceedings?

NOTICE: None of these questions and answers constitute legal advice. To obtain legal advice, consult with an attorney. This is especially important in divorce and family law matters, in which outcomes are often peculiar to the particular facts and circumstances of the case.

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Question: Do mothers have an advantage in custody proceedings?

Answer: An honest answer to this question must separate what Michigan courts and law aspire to from what really happens. In Michigan, the legal preference for awarding custody to mothers was abolished by the courts and by the state many years ago. Still, mothers are awarded custody much more often than fathers. This could be because the maternal preference still survives in the hearts and minds of some judges, or it could be because primary caretakers are more often mothers than fathers.

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