Any court will look unfavorably on a parent with a history of abusing his or her children. The short answer is that in deciding whether a mother -- or father -- is “unfit” as a parent, a court will assess a number of factors, but the overriding concern is the best interest of the child. The parent will then have an opportunity to defend themselves with their own evidence, in the form of affidavits, testimony from character witnesses, and other forms of evidence that dispute the unfit accusations. She passes her daughter off on anyone who will take her and does not keep clean living conditions. Some factors that a court may use to determine a person’s fitness as a parent include: A history of child abuse. Rachel from Tennessee asks: “What does it take to prove a mother unfit in court?” Great question, Rachel! How Do You Prove a Mother is Unfit? Accordingly, while parents may not agree on a suitable bedtime or whether or not their child should participate in soccer, these differences do not make one parent or the other unfit. So now that you know that a "fit parent" is one who "adequately cares for his or her children", you can see that the other attorneys who told you that the court looks at all the facts and circumstances regarding the parents and the children are 100% correct. The Program works with judges, courts, lawyers, bar associations, nonprofit legal aid agencies, legal self-help centers, libraries and many others to promote coordinated and quality assistance for persons representing themselves in civil legal matters in Michigan. Can I prove my sister an unfit parent and get gaurdianship of my 2 year old niece? In other words, it is the responsibility of the individual who believes that they are the “better parent” to prove this to the court. Proving a Parent Unfit. How to prove a parent is “unfit.” Almost every other phone call or on line inquiry we receive, concerns a post judgment custody issue where someone wants to prove or allege the other parent is “unfit.” The idea is they want to obtain primary placement of the children, and in many cases, also involves pre-judgment matters. In addition, to prove a parent unfit, you must show that the child suffered harm while in the care of their other parent. Courts favor custody decisions that keep children with both of their parents. (By the way, the Troxel case, which gave us the definition of "fit" parent did NOT involve a custody dispute between two parents.) The Michigan Legal Help website and affiliated local self-help centers are part of the Michigan Legal Help Program. My sister lived with my parents up until she moved in with me a year ago. Before a parent is deemed unfit, the party trying to show the parental unfitness (usually the other parent) will present supporting evidence. Proving that a parent is unfit for custody can be very difficult. If the court deems one parent “unfit,” the other parent will likely receive custody.