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Are You Prepared for Your Child Custody Case?

If you're planning for a child custody hearing, you may be nervous or even scared. This can be especially true if you're going through the process for the first time. However, if you know what to expect and plan ahead, you'll feel much more at ease during the hearing. The more prepared you are, the more confident you'll feel presenting a convincing case to the judge concerning custody of your children. Here are a few helpful tips to keep in mind.

Understand the Laws In Your State

Keep in mind that the laws pertaining to child custody are different depending on the state where you reside. Work with a San Bernardino lawyer to make sure you understand California’s unique custody laws. There may be some fine print that you have questions about.

If you have professional legal support, you'll know which challenges you may face when it comes to your custody case. The more you understand the laws, the better equipped you'll be to eliminate some of these challenges before you appear in court.

Bring the Right Documents to Court

Consult your attorney to find out which documents you should bring to your custody hearings. Your lawyer will also tell you whether your personal records will be permitted in court. Your attorney may suggest that you bring a record of phone calls and texts, as well as proof that you've paid child support on time and spent consistent time with your children.

Become Familiar with the Better-Parent Standard

If you or the other parent are requesting sole custody, you should be familiar with the better-parent standard. This standard indicates that one parent is better suited to care for the child and the other parent shouldn't be trusted with extensive custody rights. It can be difficult for the judge to determine which parent is more fit to raise the child(ren), so you should have all the evidence necessary to prove your case.

Conduct Yourself Properly In the Courtroom

If you want to have favorable chances at custody of your child, you have to exercise decorum in the courtroom. Talk to your attorney about acceptable courtroom etiquette so you'll know what type of behavior the judge is looking for.

Accusing the other parent, arguing with the other parent, or outbursts that include yelling and crying. This behavior may send a message to the judge that you're emotionally unstable. You may want to role-play with your lawyer for your court date to help keep your emotions in check.

What You Should Expect During the Court Hearing

Custody hearings can be heated and contentious battles if parents are not on good terms. However, if possible refrain from being argumentative. Parents who want to obtain custody should know what to anticipate during each step of the custody process.

A jury will probably not be present in a child custody case. You'll present your case to a judge and he/she will likely make a decision at the hearing. Your San Bernardino child custody attorney is able to thoroughly explain the process to you and keep you up to date on all important court information.

Make Sure You're Dressed Appropriately for Court

It's important that you make a good impression in court. One way to do this is to dress professionally for your custody hearing. Make sure you are properly groomed and aren't wearing flashy, revealing clothes or too much jewelry. This affects the way the judge sees you and can factor into their decisions.

Protecting Your Family

If you're preparing for a child custody case, it's best to have a lawyer on your side. A family law attorney can provide the guidance and expertise you need so that the details of your case are accurate and indicate why you are fit to parent your children. Law Office of Michael R. Young is here to help.

Contact us online or call our San Bernardino child custody attorneys today at (909) 315-4588 to set up a consultation.