Tips for working effectively with your child custody lawyer

Impact of Domestic Violence Laws on Family

Going through a custody dispute is an incredibly stressful and emotional time. Take time to interview prospective lawyers before deciding. Make sure you feel at ease talking with them and that they demonstrate a real interest in understanding you and your situation. While credentials are important, your rapport with them matters too. Your lawyer needs all relevant information to build the strongest case. 

Make copies of important documents like birth certificates, financial records, school, and medical records. Write down a detailed timeline of your child’s life. Track down contact info for potential witnesses. Being organized shows you’re serious about the process. You’re hiring an expert for their legal knowledge and experience. While you should ask questions if you’re unsure about something, generally follow their lead. They know the proper procedures, best strategies, and potential pitfalls.¬†

Respond promptly

Be sure to respond quickly to any requests from your lawyer for information or documents. If you’ll be unavailable for some time, inform them. Also, return calls as soon as possible so strategy conversations are not delayed. If the court has issued temporary orders regarding the custody arrangements, you must follow them to the letter. Any violations could hurt your standing. If the other party violates the orders, let your lawyer know immediately. Contempt of court issues builds your case.

Avoid direct communication 

In heated custody disputes, direct communication with the other party is problematic. Your lawyer handles direct contact. Do not make accusations or threats, post angry social media messages, or take action that could harm your case. Taking the high road is wise. Avoid making negative remarks about the other parent in front of your child. Also, refrain from pumping your child for information or pressuring them regarding custody. Your child custody lawyer helps determine if your child should talk with the judge or evaluators. Don’t jeopardize their impartiality.

Be supportive of your lawyer’s work

Preparing strong custody cases takes extensive time and effort. Your lawyer likely has many other clients too. Understand delays and support their work process. Trust that they are doing all they reasonably to help you. Recognize that good lawyers will not risk their professional reputation with unethical practices. Each case has unique facts, and courts must consider the child’s best interests. While your lawyer will present the strongest case possible, understand they cannot promise specific outcomes. Stay focused on achieving workable solutions.

Pay your legal bills promptly

Lawyers have expenses to pay, like expert witness fees, court reporter costs, and extensive research. Help them focus on building your case by paying invoices on time. If finances are an issue, discuss payment plan options. Unpaid bills impact their dedication to your case. It’s natural to feel anxious and emotional during custody proceedings. It’s important to stay calm, rational, and civil in your interactions with your lawyer, the opposing party, and in court. Thoughtful professionalism will earn more respect from the judge.