What Questions Should I Ask an Attorney About Child Custody?

August 17, 2023

Playing children

When discussing child custody with an attorney, it is important to ask questions that will help you better understand the process and how it applies to your situation. You should always be prepared when speaking to a lawyer by having any relevant documents or information available at the time of consultation. Your attorney should be able to clearly explain all of the various aspects of child custody, such as legal custody, physical custody, parent time rights, and parenting plans. Here are some key questions you should consider asking:

What legal options do I have when it comes to child custody?

Depending on the laws of your state, there may be several types of child custody arrangements. Your attorney can explain each option in detail and discuss which would work best for you given your individual circumstances. Some common legal options are joint physical custody, sole physical custody, or joint legal custody. Additionally, your lawyer can provide guidance on any additional considerations such as parent time schedules or decision-making authority options.

How will the court decide who gets physical and legal custody of the child?

The court will consider many factors when determining the best custodial arrangement for a child. These may include the arrangement that has historically been in place, the wishes of the parents, the child’s relationship with each parent, any history of domestic violence or abuse, the stability of each parent’s home environment, and any additional caretaking arrangements that are in place. Ultimately, the court will strive to make a decision that is in the best interest of the child’s wellbeing. It’s important to note that courts understand the importance of both parents being involved in the life of their child and will strive to make decisions that promote the best interests of all parties. 

What kind of evidence will I need to bring to court?

Generally, the court will consider any evidence that is relevant to making a decision about child custody. This may include documentation such as documents outlining your income and financial resources, written agreements or arrangements between parents, medical records pertaining to the child’s health, and other evidence of each parent’s ability to meet the child’s needs. Your attorney can provide further guidance on what evidence is necessary for your particular case. 

Is the law different in my state for child custody cases?

Child custody laws can vary from state to state. It is important to speak with an experienced attorney who understands the specific legal requirements and procedures in your area. Your lawyer can provide advice on how the law applies to your individual case and help you understand any potential challenges or complications that may arise. 

Are there any special rules or guidelines that apply to my situation? 

Your attorney can provide information on any special rules or guidelines related to your specific situation. This may include laws addressing relocation of either parent, division of parental responsibilities, or grandparents’ rights. Your lawyer will also be able to explain any relevant state statutes that might affect your case and provide guidance on how to best proceed. Knowing the law is one of the most important steps in successfully navigating a child custody case. With the help of an experienced attorney, you will be better prepared to make decisions that are in the best interest of your family.

How much might the process cost?

The cost of a child custody case can vary depending on the complexity of your individual case. Some factors, such as the need for expert witnesses, and a high level of conflict between the parties may increase costs. Your attorney can provide an estimate of costs based on the specifics of your case and help you understand the financial implications. It is important to be aware of potential costs before entering into any legal proceedings. With proper planning and guidance, you can make sure that your rights are protected while minimizing financial stress. 

What happens if one parent fails to comply with the terms of the agreement?

If one parent fails to comply with the terms of a custody agreement, the court may take action to enforce the agreement. Depending on the situation, this can include ordering make-up parenting time, requiring supervised visitation and/or therapy sessions, or modifying the existing parenting plan. If necessary, more drastic measures such as incarceration or modification of child support payments may be taken. Your attorney can provide more information on the possible consequences of noncompliance and the best way to protect your rights in such a situation. It is important to ensure that both parties adhere to the terms of any custody agreement in order to maintain the best possible environment for the child.

Call a Child Custody Attorney at Full Circle Family Law

It is important to remember that child custody cases can be complex and emotionally charged. An experienced attorney can provide the guidance and advice you need to make sure that your rights are protected and help ensure that the best interests of the child are taken into account. With our assistance, you will be better prepared to navigate any potential pitfalls and reach a resolution that is in the best interest of your family. In the end, understanding the legal process and having a clear plan in place can help make this difficult time a little easier. Our family law attorneys are prepared to answer all of your questions and provide guidance in your matter. Contact us today to learn more about our services.