Getting divorced can be stressful, but if you’re trying to get full custody of your child, the process can be even harder for both you and your child. While the final decision will always be up to the court, your California family law attorney can help you present your case and increase the likelihood of the court awarding you the full custody you’re looking for. But there are a few things you’ll need to do before you pursue full custody. Here’s what you need to do to set yourself up for success.
Present Clear and Persuasive Evidence
The court won’t automatically award full custody to one parent unless it’s abundantly clear that the other parent is unfit or unwilling to be an active participant in their child’s life. That means you’ll need to present the court with evidence showing exactly why you’re the better choice for custody.
The exact documentation you’ll need will depend on your situation, but you’ll likely need to show the court financial statements proving your ability to provide for your child, proof of a stable home environment, and any documents you think will be relevant to the case.
Consider Your Child’s Best Interests
Though it’s rare, some parents use custody battles as a way to get back at their ex-spouse. Before you proceed, make sure you understand why you’re pushing for full custody. Is it in your child’s best interest to live with you and only see their other parent occasionally if at all? Is your ex-spouse disinterested in raising your child or do they have a tendency to overreact to minor problems? Take your time and answer these questions honestly. As long as you’re not trying to use your child as a way to get back at your spouse and you’re confident in your ability to raise your child, pursuing full custody can be a good idea.
Understand the Ramifications
Pushing for full custody, especially if your ex-spouse is pushing for at least some level of custody, they may not take the news that you’re pushing for full custody well. This can make co-parenting more difficult and could strain an already strained relationship. Be sure that you’re comfortable with the possibility that they’ll respond negatively.
Be Willing to Play the Long Game
Custody disputes can take months and even years to settle fully. If you and your ex-spouse are not in agreement, you’ll want to mentally prepare yourself to play the long game. That means not giving up if you and your ex-spouse can’t reach an agreement in a month or two. It also means continuing to look out for your child’s best interest and demonstrating behaviors that paint you as the ideal parent to receive sole custody.
Remember, you’re not going to go through this alone. Your California family law attorney will be there to help you present your case and manage any disagreements or disputes as they happen.
Schedule a Consultation Today
If you’re considering filing for full custody of your child after a divorce, make sure you have an experienced attorney on your side. Contact Jackman Law today to schedule a consultation with our team.