Relevance of Moral Conduct & Character in Custody Cases

The following table provides references to state statutes which are relevant to how marital conduct is considered and treated by the court when determining a child custody award.

Alabama: Ala. Code 30-3-1 (1989): considers "moral character and prudence" of parents

Alaska: Alaska Stat. 25.24.150(c), (d) (Michie 1996): considers "other factors" deemed pertinent; the court may consider only those facts that directly affect the well-being of the child

Arizona: Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann. 25-403 (West Supp. 1996): no consideration of morals

Arkansas: Ark. Code Ann. 9-13-101 (Michie 1993): no factors listed

California: Cal. Fam. Code 3011 (West 1994): no consideration of morals

Colorado: Colo. Rev. Stat. 14-10-124(2) (1997): no consideration of conduct of proposed custodian that does not affect his or her relationship with the child

Connecticut: Conn. Gen. Stat. Ann. 46b-56 (West 1995): considers cause of dissolution of marriage if relevant to the best interests of the child

Delaware: Del. Code Ann. tit. 13, 722 (1994 & Supp. 1996): no consideration of morals

District of Columbia: D.C. Code Ann. 16-914(a)(3) (1997): morals not considered

Florida: Fla. Stat. Ann. 61.13(3) (West 1997): considers moral misconduct which impacts adversely on the child

Georgia: Ga. Code Ann. 19-9-1 (Supp. 1997): considers "all the circumstances of the parties"

Hawaii: Haw. Rev. Stat. 571-46 (1997): no factors listed

Idaho: Idaho Code 32-717(5) (Supp. 1997): considers "integrity" of all individuals involved

Illinois: 750 Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. 5/602(b) (West Supp. 1997): no consideration of conduct of a parent that does not affect his or her relationship with the child

Indiana: Ind. Code Ann. 31-1-11.5-21(a) (Michie 1997): morals not considered

Iowa: Iowa Code Ann. 598.41(3) (West Supp. 1997): no consideration of morals

Kansas: Kan. Stat. Ann. 60-1610(a) (Supp. 1996): no consideration of morals

Kentucky: Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. 403.270 (Michie Supp. 1996): no consideration of conduct of a parent that does not affect his or her relationship with the child

Louisiana: La. Civ. Code Ann. art. 134(6) (West Supp. 1997): considers "moral fitness insofar as it affects the welfare of the child"

Maine: Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. tit. 19, 752(5)(L) (West Supp. 1996): considers "all other factors having a reasonable bearing on the physical and psychological well-being of the child"

Maryland: Md. Code Ann., Fam. Law 9-101 (1991): no consideration of morals

Massachusetts: Mass. Gen. Laws Ann. ch. 208, 31 (West Supp. 1997): considers whether the child’s living conditions adversely affect the child’s morals

Michigan: Mich. Comp. Laws Ann. 722.23(3)(f) (West 1993 & Supp. 1997); Mich. Stat. Ann. 25.312(3)(f) (Law. Co-op. 1992 & Supp. 1997): considers moral fitness of the parties involved

Minnesota: Minn. Stat. Ann. 518.17(1)(b) (West Supp. 1997): no consideration of conduct of proposed custodian that does not affect his or her relationship to the child

Mississippi: Miss. Code Ann. 93-5-23 (Supp. 1997): no factors listed

Missouri: Mo. Ann. Stat. 452.375 (West 1997): no consideration of morals

Montana: Mont. Code Ann. 40-4-212(1) (1995): no consideration of morals

Nebraska: Neb. Rev. Stat. 42-364(2) (Supp. 1996): no consideration of morals

Nevada: Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. 125.480(4) (Michie Supp. 1995): no consideration of morals

New Hampshire: N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. 458.17 (1992 & Supp. 1996): no factors listed

New Jersey: N.J. Stat. Ann. 2A:34-23 (West Supp. 1997): no factors listed

New Mexico: N.M. Stat. Ann. 40-4-9 (Michie 1994): no consideration of morals

New York: N.Y. Dom. Rel. Law 240(1) (McKinney Supp. 1997): no factors listed

North Carolina: N.C. Gen. Stat. 50-13.2 (Supp. 1996): considers "all relevant factors"

North Dakota: N.D. Cent. Code 14-09-06.2(1)(f) (Supp. 1997): considers moral fitness of parents

Ohio: Ohio Rev. Code Ann. 3109.04(B) (Anderson 1996): morals not considered

Oklahoma: Okla. Stat. Ann. tit. 43, 112 (West Supp. 1997): no consideration of morals

Oregon: Or. Rev. Stat. 107.137 (1990): no consideration of morals

Pennsylvania: 23 Pa. Cons. Stat. Ann. 5303 (West 1991 & Supp. 1997): no consideration of morals

Rhode Island: R.I. Gen. Laws 15-5-16(d) (1996): no factors listed

South Carolina: S.C. Code Ann. 20-3-160 (Law. Co-op. 1985): considers "spiritual" interests of children

South Dakota: S.D. Codified Laws Ann. 25-5-7.1 (Michie 1992): no factors listed

Tennessee: Tenn. Code Ann. 36-6-101 (1996): no factors listed

Texas: Tex. Fam. Code Ann. 153.002 (West 1995): no factors listed

Utah: Utah Code Ann. 30-3-10(1) (Supp. 1997): considers "past conduct and moral standards of each party"

Vermont: Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 15, 665(b) (1989 & Supp. 1996): no consideration of morals

Virginia: Va. Code Ann. 20-107.2 (Michie Supp. 1997): no factors listed

Washington: Wash. Rev. Code Ann. 26.09.190 (West 1997): no consideration of conduct of a proposed guardian that does not affect the welfare of the child

West Virginia: W. Va. Code 48-2-15(b)(1) (1996): no factors listed

Wisconsin: Wis. Stat. 767.24(5) (1993 & Supp. 1997): considers such other factors as the court determines are relevant

Wyoming: Wyo. Stat. Ann. 20-2-113 (Michie 1997): no factors listed

1997 National Legal Research Group, Inc.


   
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