There are often many questions surrounding child custody cases.
When two people divorce and there are children involved, it can be a very stressful time. Many people who end up dealing with the details of child custody have a lot of questions as it’s not something they have ever had to cope with before. Here are some common questions and their answers provided.
Will my child get a say in the custody hearing?
This depends on the age of the child. Older children will often get to express their wishes, however what the child says is not necessarily what the outcome will be. Never encourage your child to take your side, or try to tell them what to say as this may go against you and is often counter-productive.
I have more than one child, will they be kept together?
Generally the courts will want your children to stay together. Only if there is a valid reason why they shouldn’t be kept together will they rule to separate siblings. If you and your partner have agreed amicably between you to split the children between your two homes, you must still have this process approved by the court, and only if the court feels this agreement is in the best interest of the children will it be allowed.
My child lives with their other parent but wants to live with me, can this happen?
The court will have to make a ruling that these changes can occur. They will listen to the child and take their reasons and motives for the move into account. The older the child is, the more weight is likely to be given to their opinion. They are likely to be asked questions to ensure they have not been coerced into making this decision so never try to emotionally blackmail a child into coming to live with you, or bribe them as it may go against you in court.
I share custody but I’ve been offered a good job out of state – where do I stand?
The court will assess if the move is in the benefit of the child. For a good job that will improve your standard of living, this is likely to not be a problem IF you have written consent from the other parent. If the other parent will not give their consent then it will be down to a court to decide whether you can move the child out of the state.
Always Seek Legal Advice
When it comes to custody issues, it can be a traumatic and emotional time. Try to keep your calm, especially in front of the children. If you have any questions, it’s always a good idea to talk to a St Louis divorce lawyer. They will be able to give you advice and hopefully alleviate some of your worries and fears.
Contact The Betz Law Firm today for a free 30 minute phone consultation by calling (314) 801-8488 or by filling out our online contact form.