I believe courts should always prefer the natural parent in custody hearings. If this wasn't followed you could see children handed off to a wide array of people for insignificant reasons and against the natural parents will. Children should remain with their natural parents under most circumstances and courts should uphold this. Allowing other paths would more than likely lead to abuse of the system and corruption.
Parenting is about much more than just having offspring. To be a suitable parent you have to love and care for the children you are parenting. In hearing cases the natural parent is not always the most suitable parent for the child. Courts should always prefer to grant custody to whoever is better suiited to love and care for the child
In any custody battle its always been said, the mother will always win. Judges like seeing children with their mothers or with the natural parents versus adoptive parents. I believe this way of thinking is a natural way to think, we all should want to take care of our own. We all should have the right to take care of our own. However, what circumstances do you think goes into a courtroom when deciding the fate of a child? Often divorce brings custody to a Judges court, if both parents are fit and capable, custody is usually split. What if a man married a woman and the father of the children was deceased and throughout a 10 year marriage the mother became abusive and an alcoholic, in this case the natural mother would not be the best parent for the child, the step father would be. There are cases of women giving up their babies because of drugs and or putting their children through horrible things out of selfishness or drugs, in this case again, the natural parent is not the parent the child should be left with. I don't think they should ever have to go back to that. TO subject a child to a parents dramas, have to re meet and forgive all the horrible things is too much to ask of a child simply to be with their "natural parents." Sometimes being away from the natural parents is the best thing for the child and courts need to always be on the side of the child, not the parents.
While the natural parents have the biological significance to the child, that's where it ends. Nurturing and raising the child is the most important aspect of parenthood. The parent--natural or not--who teaches the child how to live in society is the one who has precedent over the child's likelihood and no outdated notion of genetics over nurture can change this logical truth.
The courts always prefer the natural parent in custody hearings. They should choose who the best party would be to raise the children. Sometimes it is a grandparent or aunt and uncle. Just because someone gives birth to a child doesn't mean they are always fit to take care of it.