Father’s Rights and Mother’s Rights and Custody Decisions

Best interests of the child is the test for determining custody.  What is the best balance of father’s rights and mother’s rights? But what does “best interests” mean? It means whatever the judge decides it means.

Every judge sees it differently.  Judges are not all knowing and all wise.  They are in fact human beings.  They see their cases through their own filters.

1.  No Easy Answer.

“There is no litmus paper test that provides a quick and relatively easy answer to custody matters.”

2.  Ambiguous Factors.

“Present methods for determining a child’s best interests are time-consuming, involve a multitude of intangible factors that ofttimes are ambiguous.”

3.  Judge as Fortune Teller.

“The fact finder is called upon to evaluate the child’s life chances in each of the homes competing for custody and then to predict with whom the child will be better off in the future.”

4.  Best Interests Equals Best Guess.

“At the bottom line, what is in the child’s best interests equals the fact finder’s best guess.”

All the quotes are from Montgomery County v. Sanders, 38 Md. App. 406, 381 A.2d 1154 (1977)