Not attempting to get parental rights during the divorce process can have severe consequences. Your spouse could prohibit you from even visiting your child. Most parents fear to lose their child’s custody and are not able to amicably settle differences. You know that you need to hire a child custody lawyer if your case has complicated, situations have changed, or you feel that your child is in danger.
Types of Child Custody
There are two types of child custody that the court could award to either one or both parents depending on your particular circumstances.
Getting legal custody allows a parent to make major life decisions of the child including healthcare, education, religion choices, etc. The court could grant sole legal custody to one parent or jointly to both parents.
This type of custody determines how the life essentials of the child will be taken care of and where will the child live. The court could determine one parent’s home be the child’s primary residence. In most cases, the court could award joint physical custody as it is beneficial for the child’s emotional and health needs.
Preparing for your child custody case
If you and your spouse are not able to come to an agreement about your parental rights even in the mediation process, the Family Court will make decisions for you.
The court considers several factors before taking decisions concerning child custody. These include the child’s gender, age, medical problems, accessibility of parent’s home to extended family members, etc. Also, if the child’s age is twelve years or above, the court could ask for the child’s preference. However, the court might not oblige to the child’s choice if it feels it is not in his or her best interest.
To obtain child custody, you need to prove to the court that you are capable of taking care of your child. Your home should have proper living conditions, and you should maintain a positive relationship with your child and the other parent.
Additionally, you can prepare for the case by keeping all the documents required by the family court ready. You could retain a log of all such activities you have undertaken to improve your parenting skills.
Taking the help of a child custody lawyer
If your child custody case goes to the court, you cannot survive without the guidance of an appropriate lawyer. Your divorce lawyer might not be knowledgeable or have sufficient experience in handling child custody issues. If it is so, you must seek the counsel of a specialized child custody lawyer. Being represented correctly as a parent will considerably improve your chances of winning the case.
An experienced lawyer can educate you about the types of custody and what are your chances. He or she guides you in taking steps to increase the possibility of the court awarding custody to you. The attorney will effectively represent you in visitation and custody hearing and apply the most appropriate strategy for your case. It is comforting to know that an expert is looking at the details of your case so that you can spend the much-needed quality time with your child.
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