I assume you are referring to the judgement of child custody during custody cases between parents as the result of divorce, between family members as a result of parental death, etc.? The specific answers to this question often depend on the jurisdiction in which the case is in court as custody is handled at the state/provincial level. The differences between states/provinces are frequently minor. As an example, in the state of Missouri, the following factors are taken into consideration:
- The desires of each party in the custody battle, and the parenting plan of each
- The relationship between the child and the parents, siblings, etc.
- Which party is more likely to allow frequent, continual and meaningful contact with the other party
- The adjustment of the child to the home, school and community
- The mental and physical health of all involved, including any histories of abuse
- The intention of relocation of each party
- The desires of the child