Mistakes Parents Should Avoid Making During Custody Battles
Divorce can be a nasty battle that leaves both parents scarred and without any hope of resolving parenting issues amicably in the future. Having an agreed upon parenting plan in place eliminates the need to go to Court to seek a child custody order. When parents are unable to develop a mutually agreeable parenting plan, they leave the fate of their children’s future up to a family law judge. The judge will consider numerous factors when granting custody, but they will always consider these critical circumstances.
One of the worst things you can do to damage your custody case is to get arrested while the custody dispute is pending. Even if you are not formally charged with or convicted of a violent crime, the arrest may provide the other parent with evidence to convince the judge that you have an anger management problem or a may resort to violence in the future. Make your children a priority during this time and avoid getting into trouble.
Disobeying a Temporary Custody Order
A court commonly issues temporary interim custody orders at the beginning of a divorce or custody action. These are typically effective until the trial date. These orders are designed to govern how the parents will share time with the children, the decision-making power of each parent, and other custody issues. One of the worst mistakes you can make as a parent is to disobey or ignore the temporary order. This includes taking a child out of state without the permission of the other parent or failing to return the child to the other parent at the agreed upon day and time. These occurrences provide a parent with valid examples to show the court that the other parent is ignoring the court’s orders, or even worse, potentially committing the crime of interfering with child custody.
Refusing to Co-Parent Effectively
It’s not uncommon for communication between two parents to be strained in the midst of a divorce or custody battle. However, it is in the best interest of the children for both parties to co-parent and make decisions regarding the children amicably. For example, if you are unable to agree on joint legal custody, the Judge may decide that responsibility should reside with the parent who is more concerned about the children’s welfare. If you are a parent who refuses to communicate with your estranged spouse about the children, the Judge may consider you to be the problem and may give the power to make legal decisions to the other parent. A good rule of thumb is to communicate and cooperate with the other parent for the sake of your children.
If you are being challenged with a life decision regarding your family, seeking the advice and guidance of an experienced attorney is critical, especially as it related to understanding family law issues. When you have questions or concerns about family law in Lawrenceville, Gwinnett County or the Greater Atlanta Metro area, you can trust Trinity Hundredmark and Patrick McDonough’s in-depth experience in family law. Call our office at 770-822-0900 for more information or to request a case evaluation.