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How to Prepare for Questions by a Judge in Custody Court

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It is imperative that you are prepared for custody court and research how to answer questions the judge will ask you.

I will demonstrate this by a story have a story to tell you about my daughter Paloma, and it does relate to the family law courtroom but you are going to have to wait till the end to find out.

Paloma is really enjoying ham and cheese burrito right now which is one of my favorites. Before that her favorite was peanut butter and jelly.

So what she is used to me doing is making the burrito and cutting it in half and putting it into her lunch. The other day I wanted to eat half a burrito for myself so I rolled out the tortilla and cut it in half. So she came in and she wanted a half a burrito too, so this time I was making the burrito differently and making each half burrito separately. Instead of making the whole burrito and cutting it in half, so I was making it one half at a time since I had already cut the tortilla.

Well Paloma saw me making the burrito this way and...

Mediation Works. Even in High Conflict Divorces.

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Most divorces can be resolved through mediation even high conflict or complicated divorces. The benefits of mediation can be huge when choosing mediation over a trial in your divorce case.

Most people don't know that even the most complicated and acrimonious divorces can be resolved through divorce mediation.

Divorce is a difficult, costly & painful process that causes emotional stress to all individuals involved. When going through a divorce, there is something to be said for working it out instead of going to court… especially when there are children involved.

This sometimes makes people who are going through a divorce think that they could not possibly meet with their spouse face to face.

However, this is not the case. Professional divorce mediators are trained in conflict resolution and know how to create an open yet safe atmosphere where even the most conflicted of issues can be discussed and even agreements be made during the mediation process.

If you go to trial...

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...