Child Custody in Military Families

“Do I move around too much to have a chance at custody of my child?”

It’s true that stability and the child’s best interests are important factors when awarding or modifying child custody, but, they are not the only factors. Military families often feel the stigma that they “move around too much” or “just aren’t stable for children”. Both of these allegations are false and a parent involved in a military divorce or custody situation needs to have the confidence to put those allegations out of mind. Confidence in this situation begins with knowledge. So how does the law work?

In reality, a wide variety of factors come into play when a court looks to award or modify child custody. The Indiana Code actually addresses this issue, in Section 31­-17­-2­-21.3 titled, “Parent’s active duty service not a factor; temporary modification of custody”. Specifically, the statute states, “A court may not consider a parent’s absence or relocation due to active duty service as a factor in determining custody or permanently modifying a child custody order.”

This should be encouraging to parents who might be hesitant to even request custody of their children due to their military service.

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