2009 Kentucky Revised Statutes
403.270 Custodial issues -- Best interests of child shall determine -- Joint custody permitted -- De facto custodian.

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403.270 Custodial issues -- Best interests of child shall determine -- Joint custody permitted -- De facto custodian. (1) (a) As used in this chapter and KRS 405.020, unless the context requires otherwise, &quot;de facto custodian&quot; means a person who has been shown by clear <br>and convincing evidence to have been the primary caregiver for, and financial <br>supporter of, a child who has resided with the person for a period of six (6) <br>months or more if the child is under three (3) years of age and for a period of <br>one (1) year or more if the child is three (3) years of age or older or has been <br>placed by the Department for Community Based Services. Any period of time <br>after a legal proceeding has been commenced by a parent seeking to regain <br>custody of the child shall not be included in determining whether the child has <br>resided with the person for the required minimum period. (b) A person shall not be a de facto custodian until a court determines by clear and convincing evidence that the person meets the definition of de facto <br>custodian established in paragraph (a) of this subsection. Once a court <br>determines that a person meets the definition of de facto custodian, the court <br>shall give the person the same standing in custody matters that is given to each <br>parent under this section and KRS 403.280, 403.340, 403.350, 403.822, and <br>405.020. (2) The court shall determine custody in accordance with the best interests of the child and equal consideration shall be given to each parent and to any de facto custodian. <br>The court shall consider all relevant factors including: <br>(a) The wishes of the child's parent or parents, and any de facto custodian, as to his custody; (b) The wishes of the child as to his custodian; <br>(c) The interaction and interrelationship of the child with his parent or parents, his siblings, and any other person who may significantly affect the child's best <br>interests; (d) The child's adjustment to his home, school, and community; <br>(e) The mental and physical health of all individuals involved; <br>(f) Information, records, and evidence of domestic violence as defined in KRS 403.720; (g) The extent to which the child has been cared for, nurtured, and supported by any de facto custodian; (h) The intent of the parent or parents in placing the child with a de facto custodian; and (i) The circumstances under which the child was placed or allowed to remain in the custody of a de facto custodian, including whether the parent now seeking <br>custody was previously prevented from doing so as a result of domestic <br>violence as defined in KRS 403.720 and whether the child was placed with a <br>de facto custodian to allow the parent now seeking custody to seek <br>employment, work, or attend school. (3) The court shall not consider conduct of a proposed custodian that does not affect his relationship to the child. If domestic violence and abuse is alleged, the court shall <br>determine the extent to which the domestic violence and abuse has affected the <br>child and the child's relationship to both parents. (4) The abandonment of the family residence by a custodial party shall not be considered where said party was physically harmed or was seriously threatened with <br>physical harm by his or her spouse, when such harm or threat of harm was causally <br>related to the abandonment. (5) The court may grant joint custody to the child's parents, or to the child's parents and a de facto custodian, if it is in the best interest of the child. (6) If the court grants custody to a de facto custodian, the de facto custodian shall have legal custody under the laws of the Commonwealth. Effective: July 13, 2004 <br>History: Amended 2004 Ky. Acts ch. 133, sec. 42, effective July 13, 2004. -- Amended 2000 Ky. Acts ch. 14, sec. 51, effective July 14, 2000. -- Amended 1998 Ky. Acts <br>ch. 250, sec. 1, effective July 15, 1998. -- Amended 1992 Ky. Acts ch. 169, sec. 2, <br>effective July 14, 1992. -- Amended 1980 Ky. Acts ch. 158, sec. 1, effective July 15, <br>1980. -- Amended 1978 Ky. Acts ch. 86, sec. 1, effective June 17, 1978; and ch. 369, <br>sec. 1, effective June 17, 1978. -- Created 1972 Ky. Acts ch. 182, sec. 17.

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