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How to Win Your Fathers Rights to Custody of Your Child

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In custody the truth is fathers have the same rights as mothers but unfortunately most fathers don't take the time to learn what they can do to enforce their parental rights.

However, unless you take the time to learn the basic custody laws for your state and follow certain steps, no attorney can help you.

This video is for fathers who are going through a custody battle with their ex and want more parenting time with their children or are trying to get joint custody. This could be in the initial custody hearing or modification request made by either the father or mother. The father may feel like they won’t be able to do this because they have not been the primary caretaker of the child historically. The fact of the matter is there is a realistic possibility that you will get shared custody of your child, visitation, decision making and time-sharing.

Most courts use the "best interest of the child" rule to determine custody and time-sharing.

Here are 3 Steps to follow before...

Shared Custody When Parents Live in Different States

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When parents live in different states it can have an impact on the visitation schedule in a child custody case.

I use an example of Tony who was a fantastic father and should have gotten parenting time but because he lived far away from the mother and the child's school, the judge did not give the father parenting time with his child. There are times when fathers rights in a custody case are not recognized by the judge.

So, if the parents live far apart and what I mean by far apart is living in different cities or states or country, is joint custody practicable. What determines the visitation schedule? Sometimes it can be if the parent's have a great relationship and sometimes shared custody is not.

At times it makes sense that the custodial parent has sole legal decision making authority

Because a child is living with the custodial parent most of the time that means the parent is probably going to be the one taking the child to the Doctor, making decisions about the child's...

How to Prove Domestic Violence in Your Child Custody Case

If you are in a child custody battle and domestic violence is an issue, these are 4 ways to prepare for your child custody hearing without an attorney or lawyer.

Domestic violence is something a judge takes very seriously in child custody cases, thus it is crucial that you are ready to answer these 4 questions for the judge before your court date.

Winning child custody when domestic violence is taking place is crucial to both the parent who is receiving the violence and in of course, the best interest of the child.

Here are 4 things that you should ask yourself and if you find your answers prove domestic violence the court needs to know when you attend your hearing.

1. Did the child ever witness the domestic violence?

2. Can you provide documentation of the abuse?

It is very important to provide any documents you can to the judge.

Examples of documents could include police reports, restraining orders, and court papers if there was a conviction for domestic violence

3. How has the...

YOU Frame the Arguments in Custody Court (NOT Your Spouse)

The thought of appearing at your custody court hearing can be terrifying when so much is on the line.

It has everything to do with the amount and quality of information you provide to the judge in your custody case. If you go into the courtroom terrified, unprepared, lack of confidence or on the defensive you will not be able to give the judge what he or she needs to hear to make the best decision for your child.

So the question is How do you go into the courtroom confident?

The most important thing you need to frame the case in the way that YOU think is best. You frame the arguments, don’t let the other side frame the arguments

How do I frame the case? This is what I do as a child custody attorney in preparing for trial. Early in the case I will decide which of the best interests factors apply to my client’s situation.

In most cases there will be overall about 7- 12 best interests factors that will apply in your case. Out of those there will be about 3 -5 that on your...

A Parent with Mental Illness Can Affect a Child Custody Decision

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The mental health of a parent can affect a child custody decision so it is very important to take steps to evaluate and make an accurate assessment.

Today I want to talk about mental health and how it comes into play in your child custody case, whether it be parenting time or decision making regarding joint or sole custody. One of the factors a judge looks at when making a decision about the best interests of the child is the mental, emotional and physical health of all of the parties including both parents and the child.

What I see in these cases is either one parent blowing the condition way out of proportion or not taking the mental health condition seriously as they should. This is hard to gauge if you are not a mental health professional. Even I as an attorney has trouble determining whether the parent has a mental condition or not.

The best way to provide evidence of a mental health issue is to get a hold of the medical records of the person who may be suffering from this....

What Happens if You Violate a Court Child Custody Order

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If you have violated a child custody agreement or disobeyed a court order there are ways to remedy or at least help your case.

Violating a child custody order is serious business and it is essential to know what to expect and what is expected of you during your child custody case as well as your custody hearing.

So, what do you do if you have made a major mistake or messed up in some way regarding your custody case. First what are some examples of some scenarios which would not please the judge.

- Losing your cool with your ex-spouse in front of your child
- You Don’t follow through with a court order
- You have not followed up with a promise to your child or your ex-spouse or the court.

The first rule of thumb is not to blame anyone but yourself. You are the one responsible for your actions

Here are 4 things you can do when facing the judge at your custody hearing:

1. Be accountable. Admit to the judge you messed up.
2. Apologize to the court
3. Follow up with a statement about...

Parenting Time Agreement and Visitation Schedule

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Train your mind to think & your mouth to speak when you go into court for your child custody decision making or parenting time hearing.

How to prepare for a child custody hearing is crucial when you are in a custody battle. If a mother and father have joint custody they must appear in court and the judge must rule on a parenting time schedule and calendar. Last week I was in court representing my client who was the mother in a hotly contested divorce & custody case regarding parenting time for 2 young children.

In preparing her case in the 2 weeks leading up to the hearing, I conditioned the Mother to think in terms of what is best for the children. The mother and father were trying to put together a parenting time schedule and each presented their own schedule. What I stressed to my client is that she needed to create a schedule that worked best for her children and not herself.

So instead of testifying how her proposed schedule was good because it worked around her...

Can A Child Choose Which Parent to Live With?

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In this video I talk about how much weight does a a child's wishes play in a custody case. Can they choose which parent to live with once they reach a certain age?

This is one of most asked questions I receive as a divorce and custody attorney. Can a child choose custody?

Most people think that once a child reaches a certain age, say 12, 13, 14, 15 or 18 they can make that call, and that's just not the case. However, a child's wishes is one factor the judge will take a look at when deciding which parent will get full custody of the child.

But the child's wishes, alone, does not determine where the child lives. A judge is required to look at all of the other best interest factors and how they interplay with what the child wants.

So, how old does a child have to be before a judge will consider what the child wants. The answer is not a one size fits all answer. Really what the answer is when a child is a sufficient maturity to express what he or she wants. Different judges have...

Mother's Rights vs. Father's Rights

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When it comes to deciding custody of a child there's an urban myth that we live in a mothers rights world, however I can tell you that is not the case.

Judges attitudes are becoming more progressive and what judges are now looking at is what is in the best interest of the children.

So if you are a mother who is fighting for custody of your child don’t get too overconfident and assume that since you are the mom the judge will award your custody or parenting time because that is not the case.

And if you are a father don’t automatically get discouraged and despair that since you are the father that you will not get custody or parenting time because that is not the case either.

Both mother and father still have to prove their case to the judge.