At What Age Can a Child Choose?

In Pennsylvania, there is no age at which a child may choose with which parent to live. A child’s preference is admissible in custody proceedings but the judge must decide how much weight to give to a child’s preference. This is slightly different from family mediation services. A child’s preference based upon sound, mature reasons for selecting one parent over another is likely to be given greater weight than the preference of a child based upon momentary whim or impulse.

The Pennsylvania Superior Court stated, “The weight to be accorded a child’s preference varies with the age, maturity and intelligence of that child, together with the reasons given for the preference. Moreover, as children grow older, more weight must be given to the preference of the child.” Wheeler v. Mazur, 793 A.2d 929 (Pa. Super. 2002). If you need a divorce lawyer in York, PA or the surrounding areas, please give us a call.

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