Child custody cases in Idaho will contain many different elements with which you should be familiar.
Boise Custody Attorneys are regularly asked how child custody in Idaho determined. Methods of child custody determinations vary from county to county but in general Idaho juddges determine child custody with the best interest of the child in mind. This involves using Idaho Code section 32-717 which outlines the various criteria which the judges should consider in making a determination as to the child's best interest. In some counties home studies are used to help determine what the child custody arrangement should be.
Another frequently asked question of Boise Custody attorneys is how much child support will have to paid or received. Child support in Idaho is determined by something known as the Idaho Child Support Guidelines. This is a set of criteria that looks at each parents' income and the child custody arrangement. In addition there are certain principles that the guidleines are based upon, such as the thought that every parent is responsible for the support of their children. Very rarely will a parent's income be placed at zero and income can be imputed if a parent is under-employed. Each parent's income is put into the guideliens formula and the child support amount is set. It is mandatory in Idaho that child support be automatically withheld from the owing parent's pay check. *
Visitation goes hand in hand with child custody in Idaho. While judges generally prefer that the parties agree to what the visitation schedule will be they will step in and set the schedule if the parties cannot agree. Often as a means to help the parties agree to a workable visitation schedule, both temporarily while the child custody proceedings are under way, and permenatly for after the proceedings have ended, the judges will order mediation. The cost of mediation is generally split equally among the parties. While it is not binding, the results can, by agreement of both parties, become a binding agreement. Judges prefer that the parties come to the decisions on their own because then there is less liklihood of the need for modification.
Modification can be sought if there is a permanent substantial and material change in circumstances. In general, a judge will not entertain a temporary change in circumstances. Another issue Boise Custody Attorneys are often faced with is how soon is too soon to modify. As a Boise Custody Attorney I get calls from folks who have just completed their child custody case and would like to seek modification immediately. Judges do not like the immediate return to court and generally will not entertain the case unless it is clearly a permanent substantial and material change that cannot be avoided and was not in existence at the time of the original proceeding.