How Can A Mother Lose Custody Of Her Child?

Why Do Mothers Lose Custody?

When parents don’t appear to be in control, they are far more likely to lose custody of their children. Going through a divorce can be a massive source of stress. It’s important to find ways to cope with that stress, but you should be careful about how you behave around your children.


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In most cases, a parent loses custody because they display the following behavior:

Physical abuse

Emotional abuse

Child neglect

Alcohol or drug abuse

Domestic violence


Refusing to work with the other parent to ensure their needs are met

Of course, these things can also cause fathers to lose custody. If the attorneys working for your former spouse can provide evidence of these behaviors to the judge overseeing your case, it won’t just impact your chances of being awarded primary custody. You may also be less likely to be awarded joint custody.

What The Court Considers When Deciding What Is In A Child’s Best Interest

In Las Vegas, the courts prefer that parents come up with a parenting plan on their own. If parents aren’t able to reach an agreement, or if they create a plan that isn’t in a child’s best interest, the Las Vegas Family Court will issue a custody order. Unless there is evidence to the contrary, courses consider that joint physical and legal custody is best for the child. In Las Vegas courts, it’s very likely that courts will recommend joint custody.

However, if one parent requests that they receive primary physical and/or sole physical custody, there are a number of factors looked at by the court. With that said, the courts cannot take gender into consideration when making a decision. Under laws in the state of Nevada, there are best interest factors that the courts are required to consider under the Nevada Revised Statutes (NRS), such as:

Preference of the Child

If a child expresses a desire to live with a certain parent, those wishes will be taken into consideration. However, the child must old enough to have an informed opinion on this subject. Typically, a court won’t take these requests into consideration unless a child is over the age of 12.  The child’s wishes also are taken into consideration in light of “why” the child wants to live with the other parent.  If the child wants to live with the other parent because he or she can stay up all night, have girlfriends spend the night, not be forced to do homework, allowed to drink, etc., it still might not be in the best interests of the child to allow it, so courts take all of this into consideration in making its decision.

Parental Relationships

It’s the belief of the court that a child is better off if they are able to see both parents on a regular basis. Because of this, the courts will consider if one of a child’s parents will put in more effort to ensure that the child has a positive relationship and regular contact with their other parents. If a parent isn’t willing to work with their former spouse, they may not be granted joint custody.

The Well-Being Of The Parents

Both the physical and mental health will be taken into consideration by the courts. If a parent has a health issue that will keep them from taking care of their children, the courts may be less likely to grant them custody. Courts will take suicide attempts and severe mental illness into consideration as well in granting custody decisions in Las Vegas.

The Relationship Between The Parents And Their Children

Courts will look at the current relationship between parents and their children. If a mother is a child’s primary caretaker, this will be considered. However, the courts will be primarily be focused on whether or not the relationship between the parent and their children is healthy. They won’t be looking at maternal instincts.


how can a mother lose custody of her child

If you are in need of an experienced child custody attorney then give us a call at (702) 387-4014. We offer free initial consultations so you have nothing to lose.



Courts want to keep a child’s siblings together if possible. For example, if a 16-year-old child has expressed a preference to live with their mom, the courts may consider this when deciding who should be awarded custody of the child’s 10-year-old siblings. Judges will also take relationships with step-siblings into consideration.

Domestic Violence

If a parent has a history of child abuse or domestic violence against another member of the household, the courts will take this into account when making a decision. In fact, this may be the factor that holds the most weight with the courts.


If a parent has kidnapped a child, the courts will obviously frown on this behavior. With that said, a parent leaving the home with their children may not be perceived as abduction by the courts. However, if a parent crosses state lines with their children, and they refuse to tell the other parent where the children are, this could be seen as child abduction.

The “Best Interest” statute states that courts must explain the reasoning behind their decision if they refuse to grant joint legal or physical custody to a parent that asked for it. The law also states that courts need to explain their findings when it comes to the factors that were taken into consideration. A parent can appeal a decision if the courts award a parent primary physical custody without properly establishing findings.

If you are in need of an experienced child custody lawyer in Las Vegas then give us a call at (702) 387-4014.  We give free consultations so you have nothing to lose!