Divorces are challenging, and adding the element of a child custody dispute into the equation only intensifies their level of difficulty. Parents seeking custody in Long Island should work hard to avoid unnecessary disadvantages. Everything from their interaction with the other parent to their perceived motive, matters. Knowing what costly mistakes to avoid can put the parent seeking custody one step closer to their goal.
Failure to Consider Best Interest
Custody decisions are less about parent desire and more about the interest of the child. Any individual seeking custody that has not taken the time to consider their child’s best interest is making a mistake. Judges want to see children placed in environments that offer them the greatest advantage in several areas, including emotional and physical well-being, safety and financial security.
It’s wise for any parent hoping for custody to consider whether their home or that of the other parents is going to be in the best interest of the child. They can then use this comparison to make any necessary changes that may boost their chances in the right direction.
Poor Parent Communication
The goal is never to shield or block a parent out of their child’s life, even when sole custody is awarded. Unless there is some underlying circumstance, the court encourages each parent to play an active role. For the parent seeking custody, keeping an open, healthy line of communication with the other parent is critical.
When one parent ignores the other parent’s attempts to see their child, blocks communication or argues in front of their child, these behaviors don’t go unnoticed. This is a crucial time to set emotions aside and work as a willing co-parent not just for the purpose of making a favorable impression to the courts, but also for the psychological well-being of the child.
Appearing to Have an Ulterior Motive
As previously stated, child custody should be based on a child’s interest and not that of the parent seeking custody. If the court perceives that a parent has an ulterior motive that is opposite of this value, this factor can work against them. Take a divorce deposition in which the parent seeking custody keeps bringing up the fact that they want the other parent to pay them child support, for example.
Even if this is not the priority for the parent, this constant conversation about the topic could make it appear that they are more interested in obtaining custody for financial gain than they are for the well-being of their child. Child support and other entitlements come later down the line. When fighting for custody, what’s best for the child should be the focus.
For any parent seeking custody in Long Island, patience, preparation and persistence should be sought-after goals. Failure to keep these values in mind can lead to a preventable mistake that can make their goal of full custody even more challenging and in some cases, a very distance possibility. Performing research on their own and relying on the guide of an attorney can help parents avoid these and many other mistakes.