How to Prove a Parent is Unfit for Child Custody
During any custody dispute, a judge will carefully analyze each parent’s ability to care for the children and adequately meet their needs. If you have any reason to believe the other parent is a danger to the kids or is unfit to have any sort of custody, you must be able to prove this to be true if you wish the court to remove that parent’s custody rights.
The following are some ways you can prove a parent is unfit for custody:
- Observe the parent’s behavior: If the parent routinely puts the child in dangerous situations or is negligent in any way, it is not in the best interests of the child to remain in his or her custody. Consider and document any instances of violent acts, emotional abuse or clear abuse of drugs or alcohol.
- Observe the child’s environment: The parent’s behavior might not be an issue, but the situations in which he or she places the child could be. If, for example, the child is improperly supervised, is not provided with basic needs or is subjected to dangerous conditions or safety hazards, it’s an obvious problem. Also consider if the parent is friends with any dangerous people, such as gang members or convicted criminals.
- Collect evidence: If you have observed the parent’s behavior and the child’s environment and have determined the child is at risk, you must collect evidence of these facts. This can come in the form of media files that document injuries or abuse, the child’s medical records, the parent’s criminal records or communications with the parent via email, voicemail or text. Be prepared to share this evidence with the court.
For further guidance on how you can best protect the interests of your children in a custody dispute, work with an experienced Long Island family law attorney at Bryan L. Salamone & Associates.