How does the Court decide on which parent to give Care and Control to?

by | Oct 30, 2023 | Media

The Family Justice Courts in Singapore tend to give the mother in a Divorce the right to Care and Control of the Children in most cases of Divorce. Some say that this is because the perception and belief is that mothers typically are the main caregiver from the time of the Children are born and young and this makes them the more natural and suitable main caregiver unless there is evidence to show that this is not true, such as in cases where the mother has a past history of abusing, neglecting or mistreating her Children or in cases where a Family Court-appointed counsellor has given an evaluation report strongly recommends and convinces the Court that the mother is unsuitable to be given Care and Control.

In this way, many people feel that it is difficult – although not impossible – for most fathers in a Divorce to successfully challenge and fight to convince the Court to give them the right to have Care and Control of the Children.

It is also unlikely that the Court will give a father Care and Control of the Children unless the mother has agreed to this or the Children are mature enough to directly communicate and convey to the Court that they prefer to live with their father instead of their mother.

In some cases, a father can request for Shared Care and Control of the Children, meaning that the time spent with the Children will be shared equally amongst both parents. To get this, the father must have been the main and primary caregiver to the Children before the Divorce.

Shared Care and Control of the Children may be difficult to implement and enforce if the children are still attending school because it is often inconvenient to arrange for them to frequently and repeatedly commute and move and change their place of accommodation between 2 homes and addresses during the week. Shared Care and Control of the Children may also be unfeasible in cases where the parents’ relationship is very hostile (e.g. not on talking terms) or where they have completely different attitudes, practices and styles when it comes to bringing up the children.

So, there you have it, some basic information on: How does the Family Justice Court decide on which parent to give Care and Control to in a Divorce?

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About the author

About the author

Jonathan Wong

Jonathan is the Founder and Managing Director of Tembusu Law. He is also the founder of LawGuide Singapore, a prominent legaltech startup which successfully created and launched Singapore’s first legal chatbot in 2017.