Around 50% of all marriages end in divorce, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Those in their second marriage are 60% likely to divorce, while the chances of divorcing in a third marriage jump to 73%. Unfortunately, many of those marriages involve children who get caught in the middle. That’s why one of the first things that divorcing couples need to do is hire a child custody lawyer, who may be the same as a divorce lawyer.
How Child Custody is Determined
The main factor in awarding child custody to a parent is the best interest of the child. Each parent must develop a custody plan and explain why it is the best plan for the child. The desires and interests of the parents aren’t really that important to the judge making the custody decision. However, there are few factors regarding each parent’s lifestyle that judges do consider:
–the relationship that each parent has with the child
–the desire and ability of each parent to encourage the child to have a loving relationship with the other parent
–the family home and living arrangement of each parent, which will impact the child if he or she is placed there
How Can A Child Custody Lawyer Help?
While divorcing couples are often navigating uncharted waters, lawyers experience these issues daily. They know what to expect during custody disputes and hearings, and they can advise you on how to preemptively avoid unnecessary conflicts. In addition, each state uses different criteria to determine which parent gets custody of a child. A lawyer experienced in child custody knows these laws in-depth and can explain how they may, or may not, apply to your situation. Finally, an experienced family law lawyer may have previously worked with the judge. They know what the judge likes and what he doesn’t like, which can prove very beneficial to clients during the hearing process.
Finally, some child custody lawyers are also experienced professional mediators. That means that they can serve as a moderator between the divorcing couples to attempt to work out a custody arrangement without even going to court.
Family law attorneys and divorce law firms are a valuable asset for any couple that is facing the difficult decisions to divorce. References.