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Child Custody

What is A Child Custody?

Child Custody procedure is usually initiated by either parent or both for the Court to determine & to grant Orders with regards to custody, care & control for their child. 

The topic of Child Custody, Care & Control generally gives rise when the relationship between the parents (the spouses) sours up. 

The Application for this can be initiated at any point of time, i.e before or during a divorce proceeding. 

But wait a minute!!!

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We Can Hear Some Of You Wondering And Whispering To Yourself That You Had The Impression That Custody Always Goes To The Mother.

Well, in a way it is correct to say that the Custody goes to the mother PROVIDED the child is below 7 years old. However so, this presumption is a rebuttable presumption which means this can be challenged. 

Before we could go into the details of Custody, one must get a proper understanding of WHO IS A CHILD?

Anyone below the age of 18 is defined as a CHILD of a marriage.

Going back to Child Custody, one may wonder what is the logic for the court granting custody of child below the age of 7 to the mother?

This is simply because a child will need the nurturing of the mother during this period.

This is the basis which has been codified via S.88(3) LRA which favours the mother to have custody of a child.

What about Father?

Court may consider giving Child Custody to the other parent in circumstances such as other parent physically or mentally unfit, or the child faces substantial risk like physical or mental abuse, or sexual abuse, or any other serious issues should custody given to the mother

Judge's Discretion

In any custody application where the Child is above 7 years old, the Judge has the discretion to interview the Child in determining which parent is more suitable to give the Custody Order by considering the wellbeing of the Child being the utmost importance. However so, the Court will be very mindful when conducting the interview due to the potential existence of parental influence in the interview outcome.


Speak to us today on how we can assist you in your Custody Application.

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