What to Expect from a Child Custody Dispute
When parents decide to go their separate ways, custody of the children often becomes a major point of contention. If the parents can’t come to an agreement on their own, they may try mediation to come to a resolution each can agree to. Unfortunately, disputes sometimes can’t be settled in mediation, and the case will go before a judge.
If you’re currently in this situation and you and your ex can’t decide on fair custody of your child, you’re probably going to wonder what to expect from a child custody dispute. We’re here to help.
What Factors Will the Judge Consider When Deciding on Custody Issues?
In California, the court will always make decisions based on the best interests of the child. What’s best for one child may not be best for another, and the courts will consider each case on an individual basis. A judge will take the following factors into consideration before deciding on a custody arrangement or parenting plan:
- The relationship the child has with each parent
- The child’s individual needs, emotional and physical
- Each parent’s ability to care and provide for the child
- The physical and mental health of the parents
- Any <>domestic abuse or substance abuse issues
- <>The financial situation of the parents
- The child’s ties to the community
- The relationship the child has with siblings
- The child’s wishes (in some cases)
How Can I Prepare for Court Hearings?
Gone are the days when the mother was almost always awarded custody of the children. Now, both parents must present evidence that they are fit to care for their children and that they’ve made plans to do so.
If you believe your ex is not fit to take care of your children because of prior physical abuse, mental health issues, substance abuse issues, or other factors, you must have evidence of that. Preparing and bringing documentation and evidence to court is a solid way to have a child custody dispute resolved in your favor.
What Kinds of Evidence Should I Bring?
Bring anything that shows that you can provide for your child, as well as any evidence that demonstrates your caregiving abilities. Here are just a few ideas of what you could bring to court:
- Lease agreement or other proof of residence
- Pay stubs
- School enrollment forms
- Evidence that shows your ex is not a fit parent
Get in Touch with a Rancho Cucamonga Family Lawyer
Knowing what to expect from a child custody dispute can help you better prepare for court. Child custody issues are emotional and stressful, and you may have a better chance of a positive outcome with a family law attorney beside you.
Your attorney can represent your interests and give you advice on what to bring to court. Contact the Law Office of Laurence J. Brock to discuss your family law case with an attorney. Fill out the contact form below or give us a call at 909-466-7661.