Nowadays, it is easier than ever to get a divorce between two consenting people. Rather than remaining in an unhappy marriage, many couples decide to go on separate ways with their love life. This applies to couples with children as well, as they wish to offer a peaceful environment for the child to grow in. The problem is that once the divorce goes through, both parents will have to share the time they spend with the child.
Most children of divorce live with their mothers, regardless of their age. If both parents get joint custody, the children will likely spend equal time with both parents. But what happens when the mother is not deserving of that time? Can the father get full custody of that child? We will find out more soon enough.
What Are Your Chances of Getting Full Custody?
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, while only 20% of fathers hold full custody of their children nowadays, that percentage is steadily increasing. It’s a less common circumstance, as most courts prefer to give joint custody. That said, if it is proven that it’s in the child’s best interest to stay with their father, full custody may be awarded this way.
For example, if the father is considered to be the main caretaker for the child, they have a better chance of getting full custody. Courts often try to minimize the change for the children, going for the path with as little disruption as possible. As a result, they will place the care with the parent they have the strongest bond with.
Things also go in favor of the father if the mother has an untreated mental illness, a problem with substance abuse, or has been known to neglect the child. Should the father be able to prove that, they may be able to get custody. Availability may also be an issue of concern, the custody going to the parent who has more time to dedicate to their children.
It’s important not to look at custody as something you should “win.” If your only goal is to hurt your ex, the court may not look at things in your favor. This is why your priority should be the well-being and health of your child.
Tips to Get Full Custody
Custody usually goes to the parent that has the most convincing case. Here are some ways in which you may be able to turn the tables in your favor.
1. Set Up a Parenting Plan
Most parents have the opportunity to create a parenting plan. If the judge agrees with it, then the custody becomes final. For instance, if the mother signs that plan, agreeing to give you full custody, then you skip the whole ordeal of going through expensive trials. If you are struggling to get your ex to cooperate, even with mediation and proof of parenting capability, you may present your case to court.
2. Maintain a Good Relationship with Your Child
When you go to court, you’re going to have to answer a lot of questions about your child. The court will want to know how close you are to that, and they won’t just take your word for it. They’ll ask plenty of things just to see how deeply invested you want to be in your child’s life.
Make sure you know things such as what grades they are in, what hobbies they have, the names of their teachers, what foods they like the most, and so on. This will show the jury that you want to have an active part in their life.
This will also help you get closer to your child. In Denver, for instance, the judge may consider the preferences of your child before giving custody. If they feel comfortable enough in your presence to choose you, then you may receive full custody of the child.
3. Get a Good Lawyer
Getting full custody of your child can be tricky, especially as most Denver courts prefer to give out joint custody plans. This is why you might want to look into Denver child custody attorneys and choose one to represent your case.
Someone who specializes in fathers’ rights should know how to put you in the best light. They can also offer advice on how to present yourself in court. This is important because you will need to make a good impression on the judge and jury.
The Bottom Line
Getting full custody as a father is entirely possible. You just need to prove that it will be in your child’s best interest to be with you. The more reliable you seem, the better your chances will be.
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