Putting the Focus on Your Children
How to Win Child Custody)
Disputes about property or support all come down to a matter of money. This issue is different: it’s all about your children. You don’t resolve child custody problems by throwing in a few more dollars. The good news is that you will find it surprisingly easy to work out a custody plan.
We have a lot of child custody topics to cover: your children, identifying specific goals, learning how to pursue objectives and discovering ways to work out your custody plan. Knowing that the court will decide where your children will live—if you can’t—should be all the encouragement you need.
Focus on your children’s interests. Recognize that your personal goals may not be in their best interests. The thought of compromise may stick in your craw, but please don’t look at it as giving in to your spouse. Be willing to back off on some of your so-called demands for your children’s sake. They’ll be the real losers if you involve them in a tug-of-war with your spouse.
The following sections in this chapter map a route for you through the entire process of creating your own custody plan. The chapter following this one will prepare you to take your custody dispute to court if you can’t negotiate your plan. If you feel you are not going to be able to negotiate a plan, do not skip this chapter. This chapter has many benefits for those who are in a dispute or believe one is unavoidable. You don’t know yet whether you can avoid going to court; thus, recommendations will be given throughout this chapter to help you avoid hurting your possible future litigating position while you are negotiating.
First, minimize the emotional trauma to your children; consider some specific suggestions.
Second, define your true level of commitment before you go any further into the discussion of custody plans.
Third, learn how to develop a traditional custody plan using the basics.
Fourth, examine shared, joint and split custody in practice; see what it takes to make these plans work, and how to get the right one for you and your children.
Fifth, do your best to keep “things” the way they are for your children; this is what the court wants at this stage.
Sixth, put your best foot forward and avoid mistakes while your custody plan is pending.
Finally, use tested concepts to tailor your custody plan to fit the individuals in your family.
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How to Win Child Custody