Child Custody Lawyer West Palm Beach, FL
If you are trying to get custody of your child, you should consult a child custody lawyer West Palm Beach, FL residents trust. There’s a lot at stake, and you want someone knowledgeable and experienced on your side. Here are several factors judges consider when deciding on custody:
The Relationship Between the Child and Each Parent
Before making a child custody ruling, the judge will assess the child’s relationship with each parent. In most cases, the judge will grant custody to the parent who has the strongest relationship with the child. For instance, if your spouse hasn’t been around for much of your child’s life and you have, you will likely receive full custody.
The Mental and Physical Health of Each Parent
The court will also look at each parent’s mental and physical health before making a decision. Ideally, the parent who is awarded custody will have a strong mind and body. For example, a judge is unlikely to grant custody to a parent who struggles with anger management or bipolar disorder. Similarly, a judge likely won’t award custody to a parent who suffers from a chronic physical condition because he or she may not be strong enough to take care of the child.
The Child’s Preference
If the child is 14 or older, the judge may consider his or her preferences in the decision. The judge will speak to the child in private and may use a less formal tone. The judge will ask the child which parent he or she prefers to live with and why.
Each Parent’s Living Situation
As a child custody lawyer in West Palm Beach, FL can confirm, judges place importance on each parent’s living situation during custody battles. A stable living situation can have a major impact on a child’s emotional health. Ideally, the child should get his or her own room and live in a safe neighborhood.
Each Parent’s Work Schedule
Although it’s important for the custodial parent to have a steady job and income, he or she should also be able to spend time with the child. If one parent, for example, is a long distance truck driver, he or she may not be able to give the child adequate attention. The judge will most likely grant custody to the parent who can be there for the child.
FAQs Regarding Child Custody Law
What’s the Difference Between Legal and Physical Custody?
When the judge hands down their ruling on custody of your child, they’re going to talk about legal and physical custody. When you have legal custody of your child, you’re the one making decisions about your child’s life. Where they go to school, what doctor they visit, which extracurricular activities they can take part in and what religion you bring them up in are all legal custody issues.
Physical custody addresses who your child lives with and where. With you at your apartment? With your ex at their house? In the family home in a “bird’s nest” arrangement where the child stays put and you and your ex move in and out according to a set schedule? These are all questions of physical custody.
When Do You Need a Temporary Custody Order?
You need a temporary custody order when you first split up, whether that’s a legal separation or simply one parent moving out of the family home. A child custody lawyer in West Palm Beach, FL, such as Farkas & Crowley, can help you set up a temporary custody order.
Do You Need to File a Parenting Plan in Court?
Some states, including Florida, require you to file a parenting plan with the court. A parenting plan proves to the court that you and your ex have spent some time trying to work out how to parent in the best interest of your child going forward. A child custody lawyer in West Palm Beach, FL, may have templates to get you started on creating your parenting plan.`
When Should You Use Mediation and Arbitration?
There’s one key difference between mediation and arbitration. Mediation decisions are not binding when you go to court. Arbitration can be either binding or not binding depending on how the parties want to proceed. In arbitration, one or more arbitrators hear both sides on what they want custody of their children to look like. If both parties agree that the arbitration will be binding in court, it will be. Otherwise, couples may still have the option to go to court in a specific window of time. Your child custody lawyer in West Palm Beach, FL, from Farkas & Crowley, PA can advise you on which option to choose.
When Can You Change Custody Orders?
In some states, custody orders can only be modified when certain events happen. A parent moving out of town or out of state, a parent being disabled and a parent dying are all events where a custody order can be revisited. A child custody lawyer in West Palm Beach, FL, can help you determine if your custody order can be amended or not.
Questions You Should Ask Your Child Custody Lawyer
What Factors Do the Courts Consider?
When a judge rules on a child custody case, they take a number of factors into consideration. Your child custody lawyer in West Palm Beach, FL should be able to tell you what factors a judge will use to evaluate your case. For example, the judge may consider your relationship with your children and that of your spouse. If they are old enough, they may also consider the child’s preference. The judge will consider each of your homes to determine which environment is the most stable. Your ability to care for your child will also be evaluated.
Cases with children who have special needs require greater consideration. In addition, the judge will ask about any signs of abuse or neglect from either parent.
If you are not granted partial or full custody because the judge is concerned about the health, well-being or stability of your home, your attorney can also guide you in ways you can improve your situation. When your environment is more stable and safer, your lawyer may help you revise your custody agreement.
What Laws Apply To My Situation?
The attorneys at Farkas & Crowley, PA should help you understand the laws that apply to your case. Every state has different child custody and support laws, and different courts follow different rules or guidelines in their processes. Your attorney should not only discuss each law, but this professional needs to ensure that you understand what they mean and how they apply to your case.
When your child custody lawyer in West Palm Beach, FL can guide you in the laws and guidelines you need to follow, you will avoid violating these rules in court and making yourself look uninformed.
What Is Your Assessment of My Case?
During your initial interview or complimentary meeting with a child custody lawyer in West Palm Beach, FL, you should ask about your case’s success. All your prospective attorneys should give you a general overview of their process and expectations. They may also discuss ways you can make your case stronger and any investigation that they suggest.
Although they cannot guarantee a result, you can ask the law firm, e.g., Farkas & Crowley, PA, about the resolution they expect and what problems you may face. Ask whether they believe your case will go to trial and if there are alternatives, such as mediation and arbitration, that you should consider. You may also question how long they expect the case to take.
If you have additional questions about child custody, get in touch with a child custody lawyer in West Palm Beach, FL at Farkas & Crowley, PA promptly.