How To Lose Custody of Your Child in a Divorce or Child Custody Battle:
1. Test positive for drugs or alcohol:
One of the most common allegations (and I mean I hear it every day) is one party is an alcoholic or drug addict. During a custody battle your actions are under a microscope and Judges will commonly order parties to random urine analysis or a hair follicle test. It does not mater if it is New Years Eve or your Birthday if you test dirty or don’t test the Judge is going to assume you have a problem and we are going to be in danger of losing ground in the custody battle.
2. Commit an Act of Domestic Violence Give the Perception that you Might:
In Arizona if an action of Domestic Violence has occurred there is a presumption that joint custody is not in the child best interest. So, do not go to the school and freak out on your former significant other, do not leave voicemails or text messages threatening the other party or say anything that can be perceived as a threat. I know this sounds basic but I see it every day.
(Practice Tip) Buy a recorder and record everything
3. Lie to the Judge or don’t tell the truth:
I can’t tell you how often I have a client come and hire me who tells me the judge does not believe anything they say. I then review the file and figure out that the client has been got in multiple lies. I get it if you have a DUI or lost a job it sucks to talk about but telling the Judge your don’t is downright stupid. Trust is the most important part to winning a trial and if the Judge does not trust you it is an uphill battle.
4. Alienate your child against yourself or the other parent:
Many people going through a divorce try to get the kids on their side or put the kids against the other parent. This can and does backfire sometimes with grave consequences. If the other side is able to prove that you are interfering with the child parent relationship the Judge can and sometimes does take your decision making authority away from you giving you limited parenting time or even supervised visitation. The court does not look kindly on manipulating minor children and the best advice is to make sure your child sees no negative treatment of the other spouse.
5. Don’t Show up for Court or Court ordered Appointments:
A large portion of what the Court is going to consider is your current actions. If you are late for court, late for a court ordered class or appointment without a really good reason (like your dead or almost dead) then the only thing dying is your chances of winning your case. The court is looking at accountability and stability and one of the easiest ways to show you are not accountable or stable is to not show up.
Trying to win custody of your child is a difficult task but losing it can be accomplished in a weekend. Parents must understand that they are being watched and that every move will be scrutinized by the other side. Document everything, don’t’ feed your child garbage, do your child’s homework, and DON’T POST PICTURES ON FACEBOOK, in fact get rid of Facebook all together.
Protect Your Rights
There is no substitute for solid legal advice from a compassionate, experienced professional. The Enholm Law, PLLC Phoenix Family Law Attorneys that you meet with for your free consultation have solid experience with Divorce, Legal Separation, Child Support, Parenting Time and Legal Decision Making. At Enholm Law, PLLC, “We Take Sides…Yours”. We promise you clear fee structures, easy affordable payment plans, comprehensive trial plans, excellent communication and ongoing training in all areas of Phoenix Family Law.
To protect your rights, your future and the rights of your children, call (602)889-6273 for a free initial consultation one of our Enholm Law, PLLC Phoenix Family Law Attorneys today.