Child custody cases are hard enough to navigate, so it’s important not to make the process any harder than it has to be. This goes for both you and the opposing party in the case. Here are seven tips for what not to do in a child custody case.
What Not to Do…
Don’t speak negatively about the other party in front of the children. Not only does this create even more tension between you and the party, but putting children in the middle of your problems is unhealthy in a number of ways. Although parents may push their children’s struggles to the wayside in a divorce, there are psychological consequences of divorce for children. The most important thing for parents to understand is that divorce affects children at all ages, from young children to teenagers. As children get older, their attitudes shift from confusion to guilt, then to anger. We won’t go too in-depth about this topic since it’s so vast, but all in all, remember not to involve your children directly when talking negatively about the other party.
Similar to number one, don’t put your children in the middle. This can mean many things, including turning them into the messenger to speak to the other parent. If you struggle to communicate in a friendly manner, apps like Talking Parents exist to help facilitate communication. It’s best to limit your conversation to just what is necessary about your children.
Don’t stalk your ex-spouse, go by their house, or try to intimidate them. This should go without saying, but doing so can land you in all sorts of trouble. Not only will it affect you, but it will also affect them on a mental and psychological level. Child custody and divorce can be messy, extremely difficult processes, often leaving a person fragile and emotionally drained. The last thing your ex-spouse needs is to be intimidated, scared, or annoyed by your stalking behavior. To be safe, just don’t.
Don’t refuse visitation or refuse to follow court orders if visitation has been ordered. If you are having problems with the parenting time schedule, you can file a motion to modify and let the court know, but don’t on your own, make a choice not to follow the court orders. To learn more about motions to modify, and even motions to restrict, check out our blog post about it here.
Don’t misuse drugs or alcohol during your parenting time. This can affect your situation in numerous ways, including exposing you to contempt of court, monitored sobriety, or –even worse– supervised parenting time or removal of visitation entirely. To learn more about contempt of court, you can visit the Colorado Judicial Branch’s website.
Don’t refuse to cooperate or co-parent with the other parent. Remember, it’s about what’s in the best interest and what’s best for your children. Not only will refusing to cooperate lead to legal difficulties, but it will also limit the time you see your children. Remember, this divorce has not only been hard on you, but it has also been extremely difficult for your children.
Don’t make false allegations against the other parent in an attempt to try and get a leg up in the custody case. We see a lot of criminal case overlap here at Colorado Lawyer Team. By all means, report crimes, but don’t embellish for the sake of affecting your domestic relations case.
Ultimately, child custody cases are difficult to navigate both from a legal and parenting perspective. It’s important to keep these seven tips in mind as well as communicate with your attorney for more help. The biggest takeaways from this post is that you should never intentionally disadvantage or hurt your spouse, and that your children’s best interests should be kept in mind at all times during a child custody case.
Need Legal Help?
Looking for legal representation? Not sure if hiring an attorney is the right thing for you? Consider reaching out to our attorneys here at the Colorado Lawyer Team for a free 30-minute consultation. With specialties in family law and criminal law, our experienced, dedicated, and hard-working attorneys may just be the representation you need! Find more information at https://CoLawTeam.com or call 970.670.0378.
IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER: This blog post does not create an attorney-client relationship. It’s a blog post and not legal advice. Each case is different, and this post is meant for generalized knowledge, only. If you haven’t signed an engagement letter (or even received an engagement letter) AND issued some form of payment (peanuts do not count), then no attorney-client relationship exists. Nevertheless, we will do our best to ensure your confidentiality should you choose to contact us privately, but do not post about your case in the comments here (because reaching out for help with your case should be confidential, damn it).
If you have done both of the things mentioned earlier–signed a letter and paid us–then, and only then, you might be a client. But merely chatting with us online does not a client make. Suffice it to say, if you aren’t absolutely certain about whether or not an attorney-client relationship exists between yourself and the Colorado Lawyer Team, you should probably ask for some clarity. Until then, we’ll keep your secrets but we don’t formally represent you… YET.