It is usually in the parents’ best interests to seek some form of legal help when resolving child custody issues. If both partners cannot reach a custody agreement voluntarily, they should consider using a mediation process.
Mediation is less costly and more expedient than using the courts to resolve child custody issues. A mediator can provide an objective assessment of the interests of both partners and can help them reach an agreement that a court is likely to approve. Ideally, a mediator will protect the interests of the child as well as both parents.
Resolving Child Custody Issues through the Court System
If an agreement cannot be reached voluntarily, it will be up to a court to devise a custody scheme. The general rule of the court is to act in the best interests of the child.
When there is custody battle over children, each parent should use their own lawyer—preferably an attorney who specializes in family law issues.
In order to determine which parent will have custody of the child, the court will consider a number of factors, including:
- Who currently takes care of the child
- The emotional bond the child has with the parent
- Each parent’s physical and mental health
- The child’s age and health
Do I Need a Lawyer?
If you are unable to come to a voluntary agreement concerning child custody, you should consult with an experienced child custody attorney. An attorney will help you understand your legal rights and will represent your best interests throughout the court process.