Chesapeake, VA asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Maryland

Q: Pregnant stay at home mom.

My sister is a pregnant (7 months) stay at home mom of 3 girls (babygirl due in October). Her husband was caught cheating on the same day my sister told him she was pregnant. She’s had a part time job for the last year in efforts to transition back into the work force. Now she has a high risk pregnancy which will take her off her job next month. She has pleaded with her husband to reconcile even after he’s the one that cheated but he’s been adamant on getting a divorce. The kids have been with her since he left and he sees them when he asks. He went and got a new place and told my sister he doesn’t want to ‘take care of her’ financially. He is now filing for full custody of the children because he has a better income. My sister is educated, she has her Masters degree and the only reason why she is a stay st home mom is because that’s what they agreed upon in their marriage. Is it typical for the courts to side with the parent with more money?

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2 Lawyer Answers

Elizabeth Pugliese

  • Divorce Lawyer
  • Rockville, MD
  • Licensed in Maryland

A: The parent with more money is not a consideration. It is who actually cares for the children and is willing to care to for them. If he suddenly wants the kids when he only sees them when he asks while not providing any financial support, the court will likely realize this is about not paying child support.

Dawn Renee Gould

  • Divorce Lawyer
  • Frederick, MD
  • Licensed in Maryland

A: The Court must consider several factors in custody and the upmost factor is the best interest of the children. The court will consider things like money to be able to care for the children, but that's what child support is for. The court will also consider the fitness of the parent, character and reputation of each parent, the children's age, health, family relations, etc. So it's not just one factor, it's what's best for the child.

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