Child custody cases can be emotionally charged, often pitting parents against each other in a fight for custody of their children. When these cases end up in court, the consequences can be severe, and it becomes necessary to employ strategies that can help lawyers navigate the complexities of the legal process.
The best child custody lawyers employ a range of strategies to help their clients achieve the best possible outcome. Here, we look at some of those strategies:
1. Negotiation: A negotiated settlement is often the best outcome for a child custody case. Negotiating with the opposing party or their lawyer can help forge an agreement that both parties are satisfied with. This can be done outside of court or during court-mandated mediation. When using this strategy, lawyers will typically focus on issues that are most important to their client, such as custody, visitation rights, and child support.
2. Mediation: Mediation involves the use of a neutral third party mediator who helps the two parties come to a mutually-agreed-upon settlement. Mediation is non-binding, meaning that either party can walk away from the mediation process at any time. It is less formal than going to court, and often less expensive.
3. Collaboration: Collaboration involves both parents working together with their lawyers to develop a plan that is in the best interests of the child. This often requires both parties to set aside their personal animosities towards each other and focus on what is best for their child.
4. Litigation: Litigation is often the last option when it comes to a child custody case. Lawyers must be well-versed in family law and child custody procedures, as well as have a deep understanding of the local court system. Litigation can be expensive, but it can also be the only option for parents who cannot agree on terms of custody.
5. Evidence Gathering: In cases where litigation is necessary, lawyers must gather evidence that supports their client’s case. This can include evidence of misconduct by the other parent, such as failure to comply with court orders, drug use, or child abuse. Gathering evidence is a delicate process that requires a thorough understanding of the legal system and the rules of evidence.
In conclusion, child custody cases can be challenging for both the parents and their lawyers. The best child custody lawyers employ a range of strategies to help their clients achieve the best possible outcome. Whether it is through negotiation, mediation, collaboration, or litigation, the goal is to protect the best interests of the child. A good lawyer will work closely with their client to develop a legal strategy that is tailored to their specific needs and the circumstances of the case.