If I have joint custody of my child who is now 17, can he decide he no longer wants to live with me?

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If I have joint custody of my child who is now 17, can he decide he no longer wants to live with me?

Asked on November 14, 2012 under Family Law, Indiana

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Generally speaking, a minor child cannot choose with which parent they want to live. The court will determine this by looking at many factors, such as: home environment, income and education of the parents, the child's relationship with each parent, reason for wanting the change, etc.

Yet, while a child cannot choose where they want to live, if they over the age of 12, their preference is given more weight in the court's consideration. And as a practical matter, trying to force a 17 year old to do somethig they they don't want to do, can get ugly.


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