Going to a
child custody hearing can be an emotionally overwhelming experience, especially if you
are unfamiliar with the family law process. Before you step foot inside
the courtroom, it is crucial to thoroughly prepare to present your case
in order to obtain the most favorable possible outcome. Since the most
important thing to remember is that the judge will base their decisions
on the best interest of the children, your main objective is to show the
court that you are a responsible and loving parent.
The following are effective tips to prepare for your child custody hearing:
Retain legal representation – In order to successfully navigate the complexities of the legal
process, you need a skilled
family law attorney on your side. Your lawyer can assess your situation, educate
you on the state laws, and help you build a strong case in order to obtain
primary custody of your children.
Be the better parent – To succeed in a child custody case, you paint yourself in the
best light possible in order to prove the judge that you are the best
caregiver for your kids. Spend as much time as you can with your children,
always be reliable by making all scheduled appointments, stay out of legal
trouble, and put your feelings aside for the sake of the children.
Bring all relevant documents – Throughout the custody process, it is important to keep a journal
which highlights your efforts to maintain a constant relationship with
your kids. Other relevant forms of documentation include bank and credit
card statements, proof of child support payments, a visitation schedule,
your children’s medical records, correspondence with the other parent,
and other notes which support your case.
Understand courtroom etiquette – From referring to the judge as “Your Honor” and not
speaking out of turn, you need to behave appropriately in court or else
you will lose custody. Due to the intense emotions surrounding yourself,
you could be easily triggered to make angered outbursts and accusatory
statements, which can have a negative impact on your case. You need to
show that you can keep your emotions under control and that you respect
the court of law.
Dress appropriately – You only get one opportunity to make a good first impression in court,
so you should never overlook proper courtroom attire. Before you even
say a word, the judge will already form an opinion of you according to
the way you dress. Both men and women should wear conservative, formal
clothes and maintain good hygiene.
If you are interested in filing for divorce or modifying a current child
custody order in Daytona Beach, FL,
contact our experienced family law attorney at the
Law Offices of Robert Stepniak today.