Can a 15 year old decide with which parent they want to live with?

UPDATED: Jul 6, 2015

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Can a 15 year old decide with which parent they want to live with?

Asked on July 6, 2015 under Family Law, New Jersey


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

In the majority states a minor child cannot choose with which parent they want to live. Although, while they cannot choose outright where they want to live, if they over the age of 12, the court will give consideration to thier preference (the older the child, the more weight it is given).

In deciding with which parent a minor child should live, a court will look to many factors - the child's relationship with each parent, reason for wanting the change, income/education of the parents, etc.

For further information specific to your situation, you should consult directly with an attorney who specializes in custody cases.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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