How to Obtain Temporary Custody Orders in Idaho

By Claire Gillespie

Updated December 09, 2019

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Custody proceedings can often be long, drawn-out affairs. Until a final order is granted, it's common for the judge to make a temporary custody order. This order grants custody for the child to one parent for a limited time, until a long-term decision is reached. A temporary custody order in Idaho may be made during divorce proceedings or if the child in question is considered to be in danger.

Grounds for Temporary Custody in Idaho

Temporary custody orders are awarded only when it is in the child's best interests. The court must consider all relevant factors, including, but not limited to:

  • The need to provide a stable life for the child.
  • The mental and physical health of all relevant parties, including the child and her parents.
  • The relationships between the child and her parents and siblings.
  • The proposed parenting plan submitted by the parties.
  • The child's own wishes in relation to custody (in Idaho, there is no set age limit as to when a child can decide which parent to live with, so the court may consider her views if it believes she is sufficiently mature).

The court will not make an order for temporary custody in Idaho on the basis of differences in parenting style or disagreements over minor issues.

Filing for Temporary Custody in Idaho

The process to file for temporary custody is essentially the same throughout the United States. Hiring a lawyer will expedite and simplify the process and ensure someone needing temporary custody receives the correct legal advice. However, it is possible to file for custody without a lawyer.

A party seeking custody can get the form to file for motion for a temporary custody order from the clerk at her local court. She would file the completed form with the court, ensuring it is signed and dated, along with any supporting affidavits containing all the information relevant to her request. The court will set a hearing on its calendar to hear the motion. The motion and the affidavits must also be served on the other party at least 14 days before the hearing.

The filing party must pay the required filing fee, unless he is unemployed or has a low income, in which case he may be eligible for a fee waiver. Such an individual can ask the clerk for a fee waiver form and complete it in full, answering all questions about his income from every source, his property, his living expenses, and the number of people relying on him for support.

At the Court Hearing

At the hearing, the judge will consider the parent seeking temporary custody's request, listen to any arguments from the other party, and decide whether a temporary custody order is in the best interests of the child.

Types of Child Custody

The court has to consider two elements of child custody in Idaho: legal custody and physical custody. Legal custody covers the decision-making rights of each parent, as well as all responsibilities and authorities relating to the child's education, health and welfare. Physical custody determines where the child will live and how much time each parent will have with the child.

Emergency Temporary Custody in Idaho

If a parent believes her child is in immediate danger of harm, she can file for an emergency custody order. In Idaho, an emergency custody order may be made if the court believes the child has been abandoned or is being mistreated or abused. In this case, a full, formal hearing will not be heard. In some cases, an order for emergency custody may be granted without any hearing at all, or with only the parent requesting emergency custody present (known as an ex parte order). However, a full formal hearing will be scheduled for a later date, with both parties present.

When it comes to the rights of a grandparent to seek custody of her grandchild, Idaho law states that if the child is actually living with her grandparent in a stable relationship, that grandparent is recognized as being equal to a parent. In this case, the grandparent could file for an emergency custody order. As with all custody matters, the court would make a decision based on what it deems to be in the child's best interests.