Q: My child, who is 14 years of age, wants to come and live with me now. Can my child decide to do that?
A: It is often said that children do not get to make the decisions with respect to these sorts of issues. Having said that, certainly, the older a child gets, the more the child’s views will be considered. There are different ways to try and determine a child’s views, including a “views and preferences” report, usually conducted by a senior family lawyer or a therapist experienced in family law matters. In some situations, a more involved investigation may be undertaken, possibly involving a psychologist. Parents should never try and influence or pressure a child as to where the child is to live. Once a child reaches a certain age, e.g. 15 or 16 years, the child may well just do what they want regardless. Of course, once a child is 18, the child is an adult and can do what they decide for themselves. We do a lot of family/divorce law. We have 3 offices, including 8 Guelph Street, Georgetown, in the Lounsbury Life & Group Insurance Benefits building. We are happy to provide a free initial consultation via Zoom with the ongoing public health concern. Have a great weekend.