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Child Custody Cases 101

When making a custodial decision, the court will consider a number of factors; factors that could significantly impact the amount of time you and your ex each get to spend with the children. If you’re in the middle of a child custody battle, make sure you know what the court will evaluate when determining physical and legal custody. We’ve listed the main elements below:

  • Acceptability of parents’ associates
  • Criminal record, or any type of criminal activity
  • Evidence of alcohol or drug abuse
  • Evidence of child abuse or neglect, as well as unfounded claims of abuse / neglect
  • Financial standing of each parent
  • History or complaints of violence against a parent
  • Home environment, including each parent’s ability to provide food, shelter, and education for the child
  • Morality of each parent, including his / her emotional and physical health
  • Parenting skills, including the level of care and affection shown to the child
  • Past and present conduct of each parent
  • Stability, health, and lifestyle

The court will even look at a parent’s willingness to support the child’s relationship with the other parent. In all situations, the judge will rule in the child’s best interests, and the court will always opt for joint custody if possible.

If you have reason to believe your ex is unfit to assume parental responsibilities of your child, you must act quickly. An unfit parent can easily present themselves as competent before the court; and, unfortunately, your testimony against his or her unsuitable lifestyle likely won’t be enough to ensure your child is placed solely in your custody.

If you are currently in the middle of a heated child custody battle, it will be your responsibility to provide proof of the allegations you’ve made against your ex. The best way to do this is with the help of a private investigator who can use their findings, along with objective courtroom testimony and video documentation, to support your claims.

Contact a Sarasota private investigator at Capital Protection & Investigations today for a free, confidential consultation.