When you’re in the middle of a bitter custody dispute, mistakes can happen very easily, and it’s hard to bounce back from them. Fathers have to be smart from the get go, and you have to understand what’s at stake and what’s at play when determining custody.
What To Do During Child Custody Cases?
There are several things you can do to help build your case and convince the judge that you’re an effective parent. These include:
- Be involved – Go to baseball games, take your child out, visit with your child’s teachers. It’s important that you are a large part of your child’s everyday life. Keep track of all the time you spend and all the care you give.
- Make a schedule – You should establish a set schedule of visitation with your child if at all possible, even before the formal court order is in place. If it’s working, there’s a better chance the judge will not want to interrupt the schedule.
- Encourage the other parent – Don’t try to negatively impact your child’s relationship with his or her mother. If at all possible, the child should have healthy relationships with both parents, and you shouldn’t try to interfere with the other parent and how they interact with your child.
- Be consistent – Don’t be late when picking up and dropping off your child. Instill a routine in your child. Also, keep track of the other parent’s consistencies and inconsistencies. If the other parent is never on time, make sure you write that down.
- Reach out to other parents – It’s always a plus if your neighbors, friends, colleagues and family members can see your parenting and the positive role you’re playing in your child’s life. Keeping relationships with other parents – scheduling playdates, outings and kid-friendly events – is a good way to ensure that others can attest to your involvement in your child’s life.
What Not to Do During Child Custody Cases
There are some pitfalls that every father should avoid when it comes to child custody disputes. Avoiding these things is crucial to your case:
- Parental Alienation & Badmouthing – As tough as things get with your ex, you should never relay those negative feelings to your child. You should never badmouth your ex to your child, and you should never try to interfere with your child’s relationship with your ex.
- The Unyielding Parent – You can’t make major decisions about the child’s life without consulting with your ex, no matter how painful that may be. You have to tell your ex about important information when it comes to your child, like school issues or medical problems. Flexibility is key in this fight.
- Giving Away Temporary Custody – Be careful what you sign before the judge makes a final ruling. Don’t let someone trick you into a temporary agreement that is unfavorable for you and the child. It could end up becoming permanent, and you want to fight for equal access to the child from the start of the case.
- Losing Your Temper – It doesn’t matter how intolerable or extreme your ex is, if you are convicted of domestic violence or child abuse, it could affect your custody agreement.
There are lengthy lists of things you should and shouldn’t be doing while you’re working on a custody agreement for your child. The most important thing you can do is to consult with an attorney who specializes in family law.
In Need of a Baton Rouge Family Law Attorney?
Danny Russell is a divorce and family law attorney in the Baton Rouge area who has experience in dealing with a wide range of family law matters, such as divorce, child custody, child support, visitation, spousal support, and community property partitions. He knows divorce and family law in Louisiana and how courts usually side on family law matters. He will carefully assess those things most important to you, explain how the law applies to your circumstances, and help you make decisions that affect your relationships and financial stability. If you are in need of a Baton Rouge family law attorney, contact the Russell Law Firm. ****Information furnished herein is only general and not a substitute for personalized legal advice.