Tips to Help You Prepare for a Child Custody Hearing
Child custody disputes most commonly go to court when parents are not able to reach an agreement that is in the child’s best interests. At one of these hearings, a judge reviews arguments from both sides — along with all available facts in the case — before determining what type of custody arrangement is best.
The following are a few tips to help you prepare for your custody hearing:
- Make sure your home is suitable for children. Judges don’t just analyze which parent is better fit for child custody — they also want evidence that a parent is able to provide a healthy, positive living environment for the child. Some elements of a suitable home include cleanliness, proximity to schools and healthcare and the overall safety of the area.
- Demonstrate your ability to support the child emotionally. Again, support of a child is more than just being able to afford all the expenses associated with parenthood. You need to be prepared to show a judge you are fully capable of providing a child with emotional support and guidance. You may, for example, demonstrate how much time you reserve specifically for spending with your children. Your work schedule should allow for you to care for your kids.
- Never make any assumptions. Many fathers, for example, mistakenly assume the courts automatically side with the mother. While it is true that statistically more mothers get custody of their children, this is not because of any inherent bias toward mothers, but more because it just happens that mothers tend to do a better job of proving they are fit for primary or full custody. Fathers have every opportunity to earn custody of their children if they are able to prove their ability as a parent.
For more tips in preparation of your child custody hearing, meet with a skilled Long Island family lawyer at Bryan L. Salamone & Associates.