How To Regain Child Custody After Divorce
Losing custody of your children through a divorce can be absolutely devastating. Whether you feel the decision was fair or not, it means a judge clearly felt your children would be better off with your ex-spouse. While it’s natural to feel angry and resentful, those feelings won’t help you regain child custody.
If you want to give yourself a real chance of regaining joint or sole custody, you’re going to need to show the court that you’ve made serious and permanent changes in your lifestyle that are in your children’s best interests.
Regaining child custody after divorce is not an easy process. The courts take a modification of child custody order very seriously. You should too. Here’s where to start.
Consult With An Attorney
An experienced divorce and family law attorney is going to be critical to your chances of success. If you already have an attorney, ask them to explain their plan to help you regain custody. If they can’t, won’t, or if their plan doesn’t sound reasonable, consider finding a different attorney.
A good lawyer will help you assess your particular situation and provide guidance on what you can do to increase your chances. Listen to everything they say and follow it to the letter.
Address The Issues
The court did not give you custody for a reason, and most likely more than one. Before you even think about requesting a custody evaluation, you’ll need to address whatever issues the court had with your lifestyle. This could include things like:
- Alcohol and/or drug abuse
- Physical abuse and/or child neglect
- Safety or health issues in your home
- Inability to provide adequate care
- Lack of employment
You may need to complete an addiction program, take parenting classes, seek counseling, and make improvements to your residence. Taking these steps will show your attorney and the child custody evaluator that you’re making an honest effort to improve your lifestyle and provide a safe environment for your children.
Follow The Law
While you are waiting for a child custody evaluation and working on whatever issues you need to address, it’s also important to follow whatever instructions the court has already given you. Everything you do during this time should show the court that you are a responsible person who cares about your children.
This means you need to:
- Attend all hearings about your case
- Abide by the current custody arrangement, even if you are not allowed to see your children
- If you have visitation rights, return your children on time
Failing to follow any of these directions will only make things worse for you and diminish your chances of regaining child custody.
To learn more about how to regain child custody, contact our office today for a free consultation.
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At Vonder Haar Law Offices, we offer every client a free phone consultation to discuss their unique situation and determine how we can help. To arrange a consultation, please fill out the adjacent form or call us at: (707) 529-3200.
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