Child Custody Tips for Men
By John Anthony Ward on August 28, 2019
Dads can sometimes face an uphill battle in child custody cases. Thankfully, courts always consider the best interests of a child when it comes to custody and visitation. That means there are many things that men can do to maintain custody and even receive sole custody of their child. Family law attorney John Anthony Ward has assisted countless fathers in the Kenosha, WI area, guiding them through custody disputes as they arise.
Below are a few helpful tips for fathers facing custody disputes and challenges. The advice below won’t guarantee custody of a child, but it will give your relationship with children a strong foundation on which you can build a legal case and demonstrate your commitment to raising your child.
Maintain a Strong Relationship with Your Children
The most important thing to do when it comes to child custody matters is to be the best parent you can be. Maintain a good relationship with your children, making sure they are loved and well cared for. From this parental duty, all other advice for dads will follow. We cannot stress this enough.
Make Space in Your Home for Your Children
Even if you have joint custody with your former spouse and your child is not always present, it’s a good idea to have a space for your child in your home at all times. They should have their own room, and possible even additional space for toys or to play. Again, demonstrating a real commitment to your children is the best thing you can do.
Be a Present and Supportive Father
Showing up is essential for good parents, which is why involved dads should be there for their kids. Be present at music recitals and school events, celebrate birth days and accomplishments, and be available for your son or daughter when they need you for emotional support or life advice.
Be Realistic About What You as a Dad Can Provide
Just because you are a good father doesn’t mean you’re a superhero. You have to make time for your needs, and you have to consider your resources. We remind dads who come to our Kenosha law office that they should be realistic about what they can offer their children, particularly if there is joint custody or limited time with a child when they visit.
Keep Records of Visitation and Holiday Schedules
Be sure to keep good records of when your children are over for visits or when you have custody. This shows commitment and organization, and can be considered if disputes arise. It can also be helpful to keep receipts for any major expenditures related to your child (medical or dental care, tuition) in case conflicts arise over how you’re contributing to your child’s upbringing.
Make Child Support Payments
If you are required to pay child support (which is common for many fathers), be sure to make your payments regularly and on time. Should you require adjustments to child support amounts, be sure to bring that to court so it can be formally revised. Never abandon or avoid your obligations to your children.
Try to Work Things Out with Your Former Spouse
If you’re co-parenting with your former spouse, you need to consider that relationship in addition the relationship with your child. Avoiding fights with your former spouse can help improve the bond with your children and avoid serious disputes over custody arrangements and visitations.
Consider Mediation or Arbitration Before Court
Related to the above advice, we feel it’s a good idea to attempt mediation or arbitration before going to court over child custody issues. Again, this helps reduce the scale of any conflicts, allowing you to work out disagreements in a non-confrontational and non-combative manner.
Speak with a Family Law Attorney
To learn more about child custody disputes and how we can help you, be sure to contact a skilled child custody attorney. John Anthony Ward can be reached on the phone at his Kenosha legal office at (262) 654-8868.
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"Mr. Ward and his professional team proceeded tenaciously to build a strong case in my favor. His in-depth knowledge of the law resulted in my twelve year old felony becoming just a misdemeanor. Mr. Ward is the third attorney to work on my case, but the only one who achieved positive results."Emily Rogers