Child custody is an area of family law that inspires strong feelings of determination on behalf of parents seeking to protect their parent-child relationships. When parents of minor children divorce, a child custody order will normally be included in the divorce decree.
How To Devise A Child Custody Plan In Your Children’s Best Interests
The standard followed by North Carolina in determining custody is termed the “best interests of the child.” There is not an automatic preference for the mother to get custody. There is no age at which a child decides where he or she can live. If you go to court, it is in your judge’s discretion to determine what custodial arrangement is in your child’s best interest.
Avoiding court is a better plan in most cases. Custody does not have to be determined by a judge or in a courtroom. Rather, it can be resolved by the parents in a private settlement agreement or in a consent order. Settlement can be achieved through discussions, exchanges of offers, structured settlement negotiations, mediation or some combination thereof.
Parents know their own children and family circumstances better than any lawyer, judge or jury. For this reason, Vitale Family Law strongly encourages parents to set aside hard feelings and devise workable parenting plans through amicable methods whenever possible:
- Settlement negotiations
- Collaborative law
- Parent coordination
- A combination of methods for determining which parent children will live with most of the time and how they will stay in contact with the other parent
Your Counselors At Law And Advocates In Child Custody Negotiations
The lawyers at Vitale Family Law can help you in your custody matter in numerous ways, such as by:
- Suggesting possible custody arrangements and/or settlement provisions to fit your circumstance
- Drafting detailed agreements with expertise
- Offering you experience with what the court may do if you leave the matter open for the court to decide
- Determining relevant facts in your case and how best to present them in court
- Advising you on how to respond to the other parent when you think he or she is being unreasonable, aggressive, trying to “set you up” or alienating your child
- Accessing relevant information in your case, including records, evaluations and reports
- Seeking protective orders from the court to protect information related to you or your child
- Representing you in negotiations and in court
- Assisting you in your custody case when social services is involved
- Defining for the court what special needs your child may have and how those needs can best be met
- Recognizing when a mental health professional should be involved in a case and, in certain circumstances, seeking to have a professional appointed to provide therapeutic services or perform a psychological or custodial evaluation
- Understanding and conveying the need to establish boundaries
- Having a relationship with the court and opposing lawyer in your case that is based on experience and professionalism
If you already have a child custody arrangement in place and need to request a modification for relocation or other reasons, Vitale Family Law can help.
How To Get Started: Schedule A Consultation With A Raleigh Child Custody Attorney
We do our best to make it easy to get started working with Vitale Family Law. To discuss custody, child visitation rights or any related matter, call Vitale Family Law by phone at 919-841-5680 or via email.