Divorces and breakups are stressful and full of emotion. However, when your divorce or breakup includes children, those feelings can significantly amplify. This is especially true if you and the other parent can't seem to agree on anything. If you can't come up with a parenting plan that works for both of you, then the court will decide the child custody plan for you.
When going to court for child custody, recognize the things that will help your case and the things that can hurt your case. The information here will offer you advice on things you shouldn't do during your child custody case.
Don't Disobey a Court Order
Follow all specific guidelines the court gave you while your child custody case is pending. For example, unless you have an urgent reason for doing so, you do not want to deny court-ordered visitations with the other parent.
Be on time picking up and dropping off your child. The court will see any disobeying of a court order as a sign of disrespect and can work against you when the time comes for the court to make a decision about child custody orders.
Don't Come Off as Resentful and Uncompromising
Whatever you asked of the court regarding child custody should only be in the best interest of your child. You want to be fair, regardless of how mad you may be at the other parent.
If the court feels you try to deny parenting time to the other parent out of spite, then they won't look favorably on this, which can lead to you coming out on the losing end.
Don't Criticize the Other Parent to Your Child
The best interest of your child will be the main concern of the court. If you talk to your child negatively about the other parent, you act in a way that is not in your child's best interest.
If the other parent has talked negatively about you to your child, you need to convey this information to the court. This can help strengthen your case.
Don't Live a Single Lifestyle
Normally, you might see nothing wrong with going out with friends and clubbing when the other parent has your child. However, when you are in the middle of a custody case, you don't want to do anything that the other party can use to make you look irresponsible or flaky. Instead, live your life the same way you would if you had your child with you all the time.
Don't Move Someone in With You
Refrain from moving a new partner into your home while you are in the middle of a custody case. If you move in a new partner, this can look irresponsible, spontaneous, and potentially dangerous to the best interest of your child.
The other parent will more than likely thoroughly investigate this new person. If the person has anything about them that looks negative, then this can negatively affect the outcome of your custody case. Additionally, if you move someone your child doesn't know well into their home, this doesn't seem to be in the best interest of the child.
Don't Neglect Your Journal
The first rule of thumb for any court case is to journal everything. You want to journal the dates when you have your child, the times when the other parent was late with drop-offs and/or pickups, instances when the other parent was confrontational, and anything else that can be relevant to the custody case.
Contact Us for Help With Your Child Custody Case
Have a lawyer to help you with your child custody case. This is the best way to increase your chances of things going in your favor. Contact Ronald K. Smith now to discuss your case.