Thursday, April 17, 2014
Unfortunately, on many custody cases, the trial court seems to unfortunately look at the factors as a point card (i.e. whoever wins on more factors wins the case). That is not the law and the issues need to be reweighed at times. The “factors are not meant to be weighed equally in every case.” Id. (citing Divers v. Divers, 856 So. 2d 370, 376 (¶27) (Miss. Ct. App. 2003)). Our supreme court has held that “[a]ll the [ Albright] factors are important, but the chancellor has the ultimate discretion to weigh the evidence the way he sees fit.” Johnson, 859 So. 2d at 1013-14 (¶36). An example of where this might be an issue is where a parent wins on the majority of the factors but also abuses the child. This would make parenting skills much higher in weight than the other factors.