Recently, I have received an inquiry concerning whether we have any suggested tips on how to get child custody. First of all, before addressing this question, please let me emphasize that each situation is different. It is therefore critical that you consult with your own divorce, (or child custody), lawyer about the law and facts in your specific case. In addition, because each situation is different, you should never rely on any legal information, (including blog tips or other internet sources)--other than your own divorce attorney's advice--in making decisions, including important decisions involving child custody.
Also, as I have indicated many times before, this blog about Georgia divorce law is offered simply as a public service concerning common issues in Georgia divorces. In other words, no attorney-client relationship is created through this blog and no legal advice is being offered--other than to recommend that you seek the advice and services of an experienced divorce attorney in your area for your case.
That being said, here are a few ideas, or tips, which you may find useful when you discuss this matter with your own divorce, or child custody, lawyer. If you plan to seek primary physical custody, then you and your attorney may want to discuss the following ideas, among others:
1. Do you have a good, well-developed child care plan? Whether you are a mother or a father seeking custody, the judge will want to see that you have a carefully developed plan to provide for your children and that you will put a good roof over their heads. For example, do you have a daycare plan in place for while you are at work? Also, if you work late, do you have a responsible family member or after-care center which will take care of your child?
2. Do you have any "good daddy" or "bad mommy" witnesses? Simply put, all this means is: have you considered which family members or friends could testify that you will make a "good mommy," or that "Sluggo" is a "bad daddy?" For instance, you (and your divorce attorney) may need good witnesses to support your claim that you have been the primary care-giver who has taken the kids to the doctor and helped them with their homework. And on the other side of the coin, you will want good witnesses who can testify that your worthless spouse, "Sluggo," is rarely at home and never spends time with the kids. I realize that these examples may sound harsh, but, in my opinion, if you want to get child custody, you (and your divorce attorney) need to be proactive and consider whether such witnesses exist who can help you win your child custody case.
3. Can you prove "Sluggo" is living in a meretricious relationship which would be harmful to the kids? (If you thought the last examples sounded harsh, then your eyes may be rolling back in your head about this example! But you may find this tip has merit!) If your spouse, (or the more likely scenario, your ex-spouse), is "shacking up" and "living in sin," then many conservative judges may consider its impact on your children, especially small children. As a result, it may mean that you (and your child custody lawyer) may decide that proving the existence of "Sluggo's" meretricious relationship may help you win your child custody battle!
Hopefully, you may find some of these practical tips about winning child custody cases to be useful when you consult with your own child custody lawyer! And maybe you can make "Sluggo" repent from "living in sin," too!