Divorce is consistently rated one of the top three most stressful life events a person can endure — and it seems to be on the rise. With divorce often comes long, messy battles between parents over the custody of their children. Those battles can be disastrous if you don’t take time to learn about the proceedings and what they’ll mean when you finally get wrapped up in them. Knowing all the custody laws is a start. In addition, here are four important facts you should know about filing for child custody.
There are two distinct types of custody.
Custody goes beyond simple matters of “who gets the kids and when.” First, there is physical custody, which settles the matter of where the child will actually live, meaning which parents he or she will reside with. There is also legal custody, a term put in place to denote which parent (or guardian) will actually be in charge of making legal decisions for him or her.
Both sides will be heard.
If you have a particular case you’d like to make in terms of why custody should be awarded to you, know that it will be heard in court should you choose to go that route. Likewise, your divorcing partner’s side will also be heard. Both will be taken into consideration, along with various factors involving each parent’s views on the child’s upbringing.
Know when to present your case to a judge.
Nearly every set of divorcing partners only wants what is best for their children, which means they’re more inclined to work together to achieve some sort of agreement regarding custody. However, child custody cases can turn ugly, especially when one or both partners attempt to use the kids as leverage. It is important to know when to stop bickering and simply let the judge decide what is best.
Leave all the emotional trauma in the courtroom.
More often than not, the people who pay the biggest price for the lingering divorce process are the children themselves. It’s important to know when to begin filing for child custody, and it’s also important to understand when to leave all the baggage of the proceedings in the courtroom. Don’t bring home the grief, the anguish and the stress that come with child custody issues. More on this.