From the movies that you saw and the stories that you heard, child custody is a nasty and stressful matter. However, it is necessary. You have to be strong for your children and prove that you are a more suitable parent. Though hard, you have to maintain your cool and try to make child custody less stressful for you.
To help you get started, here are some tips you can consider:
Before you go down this road, you have to ask if this can be avoided. Parents that are particular about obtaining full or sole custody of children often end up in court and engrossed in a long and difficult battle because neither party is keen to compromise.
If a compromise is possible, it could be what’s best for your children. If you cannot agree on something, you have to be prepared mentally and emotionally because the court will decide who will prevail and sometimes you will be surprised by the outcome.
Preparing for court
If neither of the party is keen to compromise, you have to be ready.
You should consider the following things:
1. Doing your research: you should take the time to understand child custody laws in your area. You need to find many resources so you will know what to do and what to expect.
2. Hiring lawyers: you need to hire Houston custody lawyer When looking for the right lawyer, you should consider experience, cost and fee structure. If you are having a hard time choosing, you should ask for references and read online reviews. As much as possible, choose a lawyer that offers a free consultation so you will have an idea if you will be able to work with the lawyer.
3. Assessing your living arrangements: part of preparation is assessing your living arrangements. If you want custody of your children, your living arrangement should reflect your capability of providing a stable environment. If you are sharing a pad with your cousin, it might not go a long way when convincing the court.
4. Showing how you care: more importantly, you have to show how much you care about your children. At the bare minimum, you have to know the details of their education and other personal things like their favorite TV show, color, and even their pastimes.
During the hearing
To win the battle, you should be ready for the hearing. This is the time when the court will consider different factors when deciding. Factors include documentation, witnesses, and “the better-parent standard”. More importantly, you should have proper court etiquette. Though this seems superficial, the judge will generally consider your demeanor and attitude during the hearing.
After the hearing
If the case favored you or if you are granted primary custody, the other party will still receive visitation rights. To make this work, you can develop a formal parenting plan and show that you are willing to work together for the sake of the children.