No matter where you are at in the process, custody disputes are stressful for all parties involved. It helps to have a custody lawyer that you trust and feel comfortable working with as you consider the challenging decisions that lie ahead. It also helps to be as prepared as possible. If you are prepared for your appointments with your attorney and for court you will present yourself better, be under less stress and hopefully have a better outcome. Here are some things to keep in mind to help you be prepared:
Ask Questions – Custody disputes can get very complicated so it is important to ask your attorney all your questions ahead of time so you understand the process completely and can be prepared for court, arbitration or mediation. Understanding all the issues and how the laws are established can help give you are greater sense of peace during these stressful times and hopefully help you make better decisions.
Tell the Truth – It is really important to always tell the truth to your attorney and the judge. Your attorney can prepare for your case effectively if they know all of the facts surrounding your parenting style and how you and your partner raised the children. It can important to tell the truth about the insignificant details as well because they can paint a picture of the type of parent you have been. By being honest you can give your custody lawyer the best chance to advocate your case.
Bring the Necessary Documents – It can be difficult to determine what documents are relevant to your case so ask your lawyer what you need to bring. In doing so, you have time to gather the materials you need for your case and future legal proceedings. Documents that might be useful are phone logs, visitation schedules and proof of child support payments.
Present Your Best Self – The impression you make on the judge or mediator can make a difference in how they perceive you as a parent. So it is important that you, as much as your are able to get a good night sleep in the days before the hearing so that you are refreshed and mentally focused on the proceedings. You should also eat healthy meals so that your energy level is high and you are not clouded by hunger. Additionally, you need to dress appropriately for the legal proceedings so that you look like the fit parent that you are as the hearing begins.
Follow the Judges Orders – If there is a temporary child arrangement or orders involving child support, you need to follow the orders of the court. If you don’t, you cause harm to the outcome of your case. It is critical then that you focus on following these orders even if you do not agree with them.
For many parents going through a custody hearing is incredibly stressful and challenging. While there is no easy way to get through it, doing what you can to be prepared can make a big difference in how your outlook will be during the process. Having a custody lawyer that you trust and feel confident in working with is vital. At Andrews & Arbenz we pride ourselves on doing quality work with parents from all walks of life by helping them be the best they can be during these trying legal proceedings. Contact us today to see how we can represent you.