Child custody proceedings are usually tense and frustrating. That is why some parents opt for mediation with the help of a family attorney instead of dealing with court appearances. Separation is often hard enough. And when there are kids involved, it presents a new challenge for contention. Both parents are emotionally invested in the decisions concerning the child. But when you are in different houses, it is normal to have varying opinions about how the child should be raised. Creating a child custody agreement can go a long way in resolving most of these issues. Discussed below are a few helpful tips to help you draft a child custody agreement.
Work With a Child Custody Lawyer
It is easy to draft a custody agreement between you and your spouse in an amicable divorce. But then again, most divorces are hard. And even when they are, you are bound to have some disagreements about raising a child. Working with a child custody attorney in Riverside ensures you address all the important issues in a custody agreement from the start. The lawyer will help you come up with details on a parenting plan, how to calculate child support, and the consequences of going against the agreement.
The Child Needs to be Prioritized
Custody issues are always fueled with emotions, even for amicable parents. At times, one may be confused about what they want, what the child wants, and what is in their best interest. Sometimes what the child wants may not be what is right for them. When creating a child custody agreement, ensure your decisions are neither fueled by fear or anger but rather what is right for the child. As a parent, it is your duty to prioritize your child’s safety, health, and welfare. Even when the other parent is not being cooperative, do not agree to anything you feel may put the child at risk.
Be Ready To Compromise
In a custody agreement, you can be sure everything will not be done your way. Be ready to compromise for the sake of your child. When it comes to things like weekends, holidays, visitation schedules, and birthdays, you may not spend all the time with the child. Compromising with the other parent will be better for both of you in the long run. Understand that if you have chosen to separate from your spouse, you will not spend all your birthdays with your child. Therefore, have reasonable expectations as it will help create a solid custody arrangement.
Decide On the Type of Custody Each Parent Gets
It is important to come up with a custody arrangement that meets the child’s needs. While not all co-parenting relationships are peaceful, deciding on which type of custody each parent gets will go a long way in boosting peace in that relationship. Decide on things like whether you will be sharing joint custody or one parent will be getting sole custody.
A Bad Partner Does Not Equate with a Bad Parent
Just because your spouse cheated on you, forgot your anniversary, or was a bad communicator, that does not necessarily mean they are bad parents. Some people may have failed to meet the needs of their spouse, hence leading to divorce, but they are good parents. When drafting a custody agreement, separate those actions from their actions as a parent. If you know that your spouse has been a good mum or dad, attending soccer practices, never missing a birthday, chaperoning for school tours, keep that in mind. At the end of the day, the custody agreement is more for the child and less about the relationship you had.
If you have gotten to a point where you have separated from a spouse and are trying to create a custody agreement, these tips can help. You might also want to consult with a family law attorney to get objective legal counsel about the terms to include in the agreement.