Last time, we began speaking about the factors judges consider when making child custody determinations. As we pointed out, there are a variety of factors judges take into account, both under the statute and according to their own discretion.
It is important to understand that having the help of an experienced family law attorney is critical in child custody cases, particularly when the dispute is a contentious one. Although child custody is not primarily about the rights and desires of the parents, an experienced attorney can help ensure that the court has all the information they need to make a good decision.
In making child custody decisions, judges take into account the recommendations of child custody evaluators and other experts who have evaluated the parents. It cannot be expected that child custody evaluators will always make fair custody recommendations, though, since they are only working with a limited amount of information and may not be getting an accurate or complete picture of the situation.
When a parent works with a zealous advocate in their child custody case, they can expect that their attorney will do their utmost to ensure they accurately represented before the court, that any bias from the judge, custody evaluators or other experts is addressed, and that any unfair judgments about a party’s parenting skills are corrected. Ultimately, it is up to judges to make child custody decisions, but having an advocate can help ensure that one is best positioned for a fair outcome with respect to child custody.