When a couple gets married and has children, their relationship is taken to a whole new level. Spouses are not only bound by marriage, but they are also given parental rights and additional responsibilities if they have children.
When it comes to divorce, each parent’s custody rights can be in question. Most parents place a high priority on having custody of their children, so being prepared for this issue is of paramount importance when a couple approaches divorce—especially if one spouse is challenging the other spouse’s custody puts. Here’s what to do if you suspect a divorce is imminent and children are involved:
Talk to an experienced attorney
We strongly advise anyone approaching a divorce with children to consult an experienced divorce attorney. They have the experience and knowledge of their clients’ state laws and can advise them on what to expect and most importantly how to prepare.
Prioritize your children
Divorce can be a difficult time for anyone to be themselves and maintain their priorities; Divorce, however, is not the right time for parents to prioritize their children. Your children will definitely need your care and support during this change in their lives, and the parents may need to be able to prove in court that their recent relationship with their child is strong and positive. Any parent going through a divorce should focus on making their children a priority.
TIED TOGETHER: Read how to prepare for the child custody process: https://wildermahood.com/prepare-for-the-child-custody-process/
Think through the parenting plan
It may seem far off depending on where you are in the process, but if a divorce is imminent, we recommend that if the spouse has children, that spouse begins to think about what their parenting/custodial plan should be like. Due to the complexity of a parenting plan/custody arrangement, they benefit from thinking ahead rather than waiting until the last minute. You need to create a plan that includes how each parent will behave with their child and how often custody will be exercised. The more detail that is included in the parenting plan/custody arrangement, the better in the long run – from how the parents communicate with each other, to the vacations they take with their child, and every detail in between. These five key parenting plan considerations can help.
Keep a parent diary
A parent can know in their heart that they are doing their best to be a good role model and provide their child with the best life. Unfortunately, when a custody case goes to court, that parent must provide evidence of their relationship. While not all divorces involving children end up fighting for custody in court, keeping a parent’s diary documenting interactions, activities, etc. can only help them if their case ends up in court. Showing how often a parent is there for their children and what they do to create a great life for their children can be difficult to prove without preparation, but a journal can help to remember specific scenarios and events who can help her case.
Being a parent is a gift, and we encourage all parents who suspect a divorce is imminent to be prepared to protect their custody rights and maintain a close relationship with their child. If you find yourself in this situation, we hope these tips can help.
For information on what our experienced attorneys at Wilder Mahood McKinley & Oglesby can do to help you with your divorce or custody case, contact us online at https://wildermahood.com/contact/ or call our Pittsburgh office , Pennsylvania, at 412 at -261-4040.