Custody Battle

By Staff Writer

If you and your spouse are involved in a custody battle, you should be aware that if you go to court, statistics show that you will be less satisfied with the outcome than if you decided it yourselves. No matter how great the anger or enmity involved, going to court will increase the pain, and not lessen it. Plus it may seriously reduce your chances for getting the child custody and visitation scenario that you originally wanted.

Why a Custody Battle in Court is Never a Good Idea
Why is this? Well, if you go to court, there is no guarantee that you will get the custody arrangement that you want, even if it is available under your state's laws. The judge makes the final decision. Family court judges often work their way through an incredible backlog of cases, and may devote only a short amount of time to make a decision that will affect you and your children's lives for years to come.

Many judges rely on the testimony of social workers and psychiatrists to evaluate your case. These child custody evaluations may have been drawn up in a hurry, and no case worker is going to know your family as well as you do. A cursory visit and report may completely misinterpret the dynamics of your family, yet what they advise may be set in stone for years to come.

In a custody battle, lawyers will use your past, your habits, even members of your family to discredit you. Your own children may even have to testify, and this could scar them emotionally for years. If you survive this court process, don't forget that the bitterness it created may well impact your day-to-day dealings with your spouse for the rest of your life. It may take a lasting toll on your children's quality of life as they attempt to maneuver around two sparring parents.