Evidence against the current guardian could include things like evidence of their drug abuse or proof of physical abuse towards the child.
There are certain situations when you must act as a parent to gain custody of a child. Perhaps the current guardian has shown themselves to be irresponsible or even neglectful in caring for the child, or the question of guardianship is up in the air and you think you would be the candidate best suited for the job. Perhaps they gained sole custody unfairly and you wish to contest the decision. Whatever the reasons, if you want to gain custody of your child back, you need to hire a lawyer and work within the system to do so. Below is what you should do when it’s time to fight for custody.
Consider an Out of Court Agreement
Legal battles can be hard, expensive, and time-consuming. This is certainly no exception for a child custody case. It’s always wise to see if you can come to an agreement beforehand that does not involve going to court. If you can get the other parent to relinquish custody willingly, you won’t have to go into so much trouble. If the other parent is actually trustworthy, a joint custody agreement might be a good compromise.
Choose the Right Lawyer
Overall, it’s quite likely you won’t be able to come to an agreement. In that case, your best option is to hire an experienced child custody lawyer, someone like James W Bodiford Jr Law Office. Child custody is an especially complex part of family law. You need an expert with experience winning cases to successfully navigate the hurdles you will be presented with to gain custody of your child.
Obtain Evidence for Your Case
Like all court cases, child custody cases require the submission of evidence into the record. Once you have decided to sue for sole custody, you should begin working with your lawyer on obtaining and retaining the evidence you will need to win in court. This should be evidence regarding your fitness to be a parent and the current guardian’s unfitness to be a parent. Evidence for your side could include testimony from friends and family on your parenting and documentation of your involvement with your child. Evidence against the current guardian could include things like evidence of their drug abuse or proof of physical abuse towards the child.
Present Your Case
Eventually, you will end up in the actual court case. When this happens, you better be sure that both you and your lawyer are fully prepared. This includes knowing what you will say when you are questioned by the judge as well as the current guardian’s attorney. Being prepared means having your evidence prepared to be presented in court. It also means knowing to be polite and courteous in court. While you should let your lawyer handle most of it, you cannot slack off either in regards to what is expected of you or the other side may take advantage of that.
Overall, child custody battles can be hard, long, and frustrating. Even if you have taken all the proper steps, you still need to be prepared for a slog of the legal process. Try to keep your children out of the process and remain civil with the other side even if it’s hard. It will be worth it if you end up winning custody.