Being the Best Parent During a Custody Dispute
(Provided by How to Win Child Custody)

Your fitness as a parent is going to be questioned in any custody dispute. Donít give your spouse any facts on which to argue you’re doing something harmful to your children. Remember that you’re living in a glass house during this entire period. Avoid impulsive, rash or in fact any unconsidered act that might give your spouse even a toehold for an argument you’re an unfit parent.

Don’t live with a new sexual partner. Try not to even have your friend over during the time the children are with you, while going through this war zone. Be a model parent in caring for your children and you’ll be invulnerable in court. Discuss any changes that you’re thinking about with your attorney in advance if there’s the slightest chance it might affect your children or your case.

Your spouse’s fitness as a parent is also on the line. If you fail to question it, your spouse’s attorney will surely argue that his or her fitness is unquestioned and therefore your spouse is an outstanding parent. Present evidence of the ways your spouse’s lifestyle is detrimental to your children, if you have the evidence, in a way that keeps the focus of your case on whatís good for your children. Don’t try the court’s patience with more whining anecdotes about why your marriage didn’t work. Remember: Bringing in weak points dilutes the impact of your strong ones.

When you have the evidence, use third parties, such as neighbors, co-workers and new or old friends, to testify about your spouse’s poor treatment of the children or lack of ethical or emotional guidance for them. This testimony should always come in from neutral third parties, rather asking the court to listen to you harping about what a jerk your spouse is.

Wonderful sources of testimony are the professionals naturally in your children’s lives, such as teachers and day care center operators. Bonus sources are your spouse’s friends or family, if willing to state facts showing your spouse’s treatment of your children is substandard. Such witnesses are too good to hope for, but still worth checking for. It has happened before, because of a personís greater concern for the children than for their own kin or friend.

Don’t be surprised if your spouse’s attorney accuses you of wanting custody only to get, or avoid paying, child support. If you haven’t done anything to show this is true, you’ve nothing to worry about. Your spouse’s attorney may claim many things, which your attorney can object to since there is no evidence to support the claim. Your position is enhanced if your spouse’s attorney has only speculation to work with, and raises only questions that should have been asked long before the hearing.

Information provided by:
How to Win Child Custody

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