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Obtaining Custody in Oregon

The State of Oregon awards custody based on the “best interests and welfare of the child”. That is, the court undergoes a review of the facts of the case and makes an award of custody to one parent or the other based on their notion of the best interests of the child. In so doing, the court reviews several statutorily imposed factors and decides which parent should be awarded custody. The court may consider the following relevant factors:

1. The emotional ties between the child and other family members;

2. The interests of the parties in and attitude toward the child;

3. The desirability of continuing an existing relationship;

4. The abuse of one parent by the other;

5. The child’s preference for the primary caregiver of the child, if the caregiver is deemed fit by the court; and

6. Each parent’s willingness and ability to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing relationship between the other parent and the child.

The court cannot determine the child’s best interests by isolating any of the above factors and relying on it to the exclusion of other factors.

Obtaining custody is a long and complicated process. Receiving legal advice on custody matters is important as there are several legal maneuvers that could make the difference between being the custodial parent or being the non-custodial parent. Indeed, in many custody cases the parent who wins is the first to receive legal advice. In other words, time is of the essence in these matters. Contact the attorneys at Bobzien McGuire through email at loren@portlandfamilylaw.com or via telephone at (503) 245-0894 for more information on how to protect your parental rights.

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