For many parents involved in a divorce or separation, child custody becomes one of the top concerns. In North Carolina, all family law decisions involving children are made with the best interests of a child in mind. This means that it is more beneficial to you to demonstrate all the things that make you a parent who is fit and responsible enough to provide your child with the care and support they need than to go out of your way to put down the other parent.
At Dummit Fradin Attorneys at Law, our child custody attorneys have helped numerous parents throughout the state protect their rights during child custody matters. Aside from ensuring that parents understand their rights and how to pursue a positive custody agreement, we also make sure to provide them with the information they need to avoid some common mistakes that can impact their case and their ability to have custody or visitation.
Here are 5 mistakes to avoid when it comes to child custody:
- Placing your interests above your children’s – The first and most important thing you should remember in any family law proceeding involving children is that you should always make decisions that are in the best interests of the child. While you may wish to have a close relationship with your children, you need to consider what is best and healthiest for them, as courts will do the same. For example, if relocating your child to a different state means that they’ll have a hard time adjusting to a new life and new school, you should reconsider your options and how your child may feel before fighting it out with the other parent.
- Losing your cool – Losing your temper is a sure fire way to raise red flags in the eyes of the court. Family law is centered on the best interests of children in custody proceedings, which means you need to set a good example and demonstrate that you have the emotional stability to provide and care for your child with self-control.
- Not working with your former spouse – A divorce or separation is between parents, not children. Being open to negotiations and amicable resolutions can save considerable costs, time, and energy during custody proceedings, and set a good impression of your willingness to compromise to the court. What you say and do in regard to your former spouse may also call into question your character and how fit courts may view you as a parent. This includes sending negative emails, making harassing calls, or losing your cool anytime you interact with the other parent.
- New dating relationships – While your divorce means that you can start anew and find a partner who may be a better fit, you should consider how and if a new dating relationship will impact child custody proceedings, especially if it arises during the course of a divorce. Entering into a dating relationship with a new partner may mean that your child will not want to live with that person, that courts may not find it to be in the best interests of a child to place them in a home with the new partner, or that your former spouse may be more confrontational during custody matters.
- Not being there for your children – If custody of your children is truly what you want, you need to be sure that it really is in the best interests of your children. This means being a fit and responsible parent who makes the effort to spend time with children and help them in various ways. Making a habit of blowing off responsibilities or rescheduling parenting time can be viewed negatively by the court.
If you have questions about child custody, family law, and your personal situation, our legal team at Dummit Fradin Attorneys at Law is happy to discuss your case and discuss how we can help. Contact us today to request an initial consultation.