When can a child choose

Very good question. I am interested in the attorney’s response on this one as well.



A child’s wish regarding custody is one factor that a judge can consider in making a decision, but a judge is not bound by the child’s choice. There is no “magic age” at which a judge will definitely consider the child’s wishes, but the older the child, the more likely it is that a judge would consider his or her preference. Below about nine years old, it would probably be tough to assign much weight. Plus, to ask a young child to choose is potentially traumatic, and in most circumstances children shouldn’t be placed in that position.

David L. McGuire
The Rosen Law Firm
4101 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 200
Raleigh, North Carolina 27607

The response posted above is based upon the limited factual information made available and is not intended as a full and complete response to the question. The only reliable manner to obtain complete and adequate legal advice is to consult with an attorney, fully explain your situation, and allow the attorney sufficient opportunity to research the applicable law and facts required to render an accurate opinion. The basic information provided above is intended as a public service but a full discussion with an attorney should be undertaken before taking any action.

At what age can a child choose the parent he wants to live with?