Custody is not usually an easy thing for fathers to win, despite the fact that courts do not discriminate against dads. If you plan on filing for full or joint custody, be prepared for a harrowing custody battle, particularly if the child’s mother is also filing for custody. This is not impossible to achieve, however, and there are several things fathers can do to improve their odds.
- Pay Child Support: If you want custody of your child, make sure that you continue to regularly pay child support. If the arrangement you have with your ex is less formal, be sure to maintain records of payments, including check receipts or written letters from the mother regarding the arrangement. Courts are also understanding, so if you are struggling to make these payments, request a modification.
- Nurture a Strong Relationship: Even if your child is not in your custody, calling your child frequently to check in on his or her wellbeing is important. You can also stop by your child’s school to introduce yourself to the administration and ask about your child’s academic progress.
- Maintain Accurate Records: To help win child custody, maintain an accurate visitation schedule by developing a parenting plan. You can submit this plan to court when child custody is decided.
- Attend Important School and Social Gatherings: It is important to be involved in your child’s life if you want custody, so be sure to attend your child’s social, educational, religious and other important events as evidence of your continued relationship. If your child is in a play, go see it. A court will look for signs of a meaningful relationship and this is one of the best ways to prove it.
- Have a Space for Your Child: Even if your living accommodations are not big, you should always prepare a special place in your home for your child. Expect the court to inquire about your living accommodations and be prepared to respond.
- Be Respectful: As contentious as divorce and child custody cases can be, you should still remember to be respectful of your child’s mother. How you treat her can be a factor in determining child custody and rude behavior will certainly hurt your chances.
- Consider Mediation or Arbitration: Mediation and arbitration provide smaller, friendlier settings that might be easier to handle than the pressure of a courtroom case. Consider these options before going to court.
San Diego Child Custody Lawyers
If you are in the midst of a child custody battle, having the right representation can help you achieve a better outcome for your case. At Cage & Miles, LLP, we are committed to providing compassionate and tough representation to help get you through this. We have handled hundreds of family law and custody legal proceedings. Let us do the same for you.
Call our office today at (858) 943-2060 for a free 30-minute no-obligation case consultation.