How Can I Improve My Chances in a Child Custody Case?

All too often parents who enter a custody battle don’t know what they’re getting into. Some people believe that if they’re a good parent, “the truth will come out” and they will win in the end. Unfortunately, these are often the people who later find themselves standing in a courtroom with minimal visitation rights stunned and unsure about how they got there.

Being a great parent and being able to demonstrate that you are the best parent to care for your child are two different things. While your family law attorney can give you more specific direction based on your individual case, these tips can also help you improve your chances of a successful outcome.

Be Straightforward

Between the questions and the documentation, a custody battle can feel like an unrelenting investigation into your life. When you’re faced with difficult questions, it can be tempting to bend the truth to make yourself look better. At the end of the day, however, remember that the ultimate decision comes down to a judge, and that judge will view you less favorably if they catch you in a lie at any point in the process. You have more to lose than you have to gain by trying to hide information or lie about your circumstances.

Prioritize Your Parenthood

A custody battle is a stressful life event, especially when it’s happening in the midst of a divorce. Between the emotional strain, the meetings, the court dates, and the financial stress, it’s challenging to juggle it all while still spending time with your child. However, if your child feels neglected, it could come back to bite you in court.

Do what you need to do to maintain a healthy and positive relationship with your child during your custody battle. This includes protecting your child from the conflict with your ex. If you try to keep your child away from your ex or if you insult your ex while speaking to your child, your ex can use it against you in court.

Police Yourself Online

It should come as no surprise that when your ex’s attorney is looking for evidence that hurts your custody case, the first thing they will do is look for you online. As soon as possible, you need to clean up your online presence. Delete anything you may have posted or shared on social media that could paint you in a negative light. This includes pictures in which you’re drinking excessively, potentially offensive jokes, and more. You also need to avoid posting anything derogatory against your ex, because your ex could use it as evidence that you would not support their relationship with your child if you win primary custody. Even sharing graphics or images with certain phrases on them could be interpreted to be about your case, so it’s best to avoid doing so all together. Just stick to posting those precious moments of milestones and happy times between you and your children!

Minimize Major Life Changes

When it comes to your custody case you want to show that you provide a stable, reliable home for your child. Judges don’t want to place a child with a parent if they have no idea where that parent will be one year from now. During your custody battle, try to avoid major life changes as much as possible. This is not the time to move to a new city or to change careers. The only exception is if you’re correcting something that would work against you in court. For example, if you’re unemployed, getting a secure job is one life change you need to make as early as possible in the case.

Hire an Experienced Lawyer

This should go without saying, but not every parent realizes how much their lawyer will impact their case. You might want to do a favor for your nephew who just graduated from law school or your cousin who only has a history with contract law, but your child’s well-being isn’t worth the risk. Hire an experienced attorney who specializes in family law alone. Make sure they have handled many cases that were similar to yours and that they have a track record of success.

With all this in mind, remember that every custody case is unique. When you hire the right lawyer, they can give you direct guidance about how to make your living situation more appealing and maximize your chances for a positive outcome. To start the process of securing your future with your children, call Oxendine Law today to schedule a meeting.