Please note that all online divorce platforms are not the same. Much of the content below does not apply to BlissDivorce. BlissDivorce is the only complete online divorce solution, including property division, child custody, spousal support, and AI-powered Digital Divorce Mediation.
Custody battles can easily get complicated and only add more hurt to an already tumultuous time in your life. If you add lawyers, the situation may escalate even more. This is why it is best to learn how to win custody without a lawyer.
In these disputes, the most significant negative impact is on the children, which is what you want to avoid. The children’s best interest must be the priority, despite the negative feelings between the parents.
How to Win Custody Without a Lawyer
While divorce is among the hardest and most heartbreaking periods in one’s life, they are made even more complicated when minor children are involved. If you are preparing for a custody battle, it is crucial not to lose sight of the most important aspect – your child/children.
As parents, you should do everything possible to avoid a drawn-out battle that will hurt your children. This is why you should avoid involving lawyers in your divorce process and custody case.
It is a common misconception that a divorce attorney is more valuable than filing for divorce and custody alone. Not only are lawyers expensive, but they may often fuel the animosity between you and your ex-spouse.
Considering this, you can fill out the forms from your local family court yourself and file them to start the custody case. To win custody without a lawyer, ensure that you read up on the laws in your state and remain well-informed and vigilant throughout the case.
Besides that, you should think of getting help from an online divorce service. With the help of our online divorce platform, you may separate and settle child custody agreement without causing more heartache to your children.
Getting help from a divorce online platform
Wondering how to get custody of a child without hiring a lawyer? We will help you find it out! There are many online divorce platforms that may help you avoid court trials and get the desired outcome stress-free.
It’s important to know that online divorce services provide an excellent way to divorce and settle custody without a lawyer’s representation. Online divorce allows every parent to complete the online divorce and custody process independently. So, you can set the child’s custody and visitations and decide whether the child will primarily live with you, spend time evenly, or primarily with your spouse.
Once you complete this process, you submit the request, and the software compares your and your spouse’s results. If there are any disagreements, both of you get informed about it, and you can use built-in digital mediation tools or try to work out the disagreements on your own. Zoom-based mediators are also available if needed.
Via online divorce platforms, there are greater chances of resolving and winning child custody in a human manner. With mutual agreement, you can schedule visitations and holidays your child is going to spend with each parent.
Tips On How To Win Custody Without a Lawyer
Prepare your custody case
The first step to winning custody is preparation. During the preparation period, you must abide by any existing court orders, even those you disagree with. Abiding by court orders will show the judge your willingness to follow written orders.
Prepare by reading up on your state’s custody laws and procedures. The more prepared you are, the better your chances of winning custody over your child are. You might want to visit your state’s court website, where you can find helpful information about custody law, legal forms, and copies of motions.
Another useful preparation tip is learning your local court’s rules and procedures. This is useful if your custody case must be settled inside the courtroom.
Gather useful information
When starting your custody case, you must present only useful information and relevant documents to the judge. Without a lawyer present, you should include copies of all documents that support your arguments. This includes call logs and records of visits with your children.
If the other parent is causing issues like alienation or not respecting a visiting schedule, it may sway the judge in your favor.
Other crucial documents are your child/children’s medical records. For instance, if the child is injured while in the other parent’s care, include doctor and ER records. Include them in the written submissions to support your positions about the orders you ask the court to issue.
Follow proper procedure
During the custody battle process, you may need to file new motions or submit evidence for any new changes to the custody agreement.
Changes in the custody agreement may include the number of visitations and how long they last and other decisions regarding the shared children. Evidence may include copies of bank statements, bills, pictures, letters, calls, and video records.
Ensure that you file all forms, motions, and exhibits on their filing dates. You can find out the exact dates from your local court clerk. You should submit copies to the court and the other parent.
Filing the forms starts your custody case, while the evidence and documents help support your argument and show the court how you are the better parent for your children.
Attend every court appointment
It is vital that you attend all appointments the court requests. If the court orders any evaluations, make yourself available and complete the process. This shows the judge that you are a reliable person and have your child/children’s best interest as the priority.
Once the judge sees you are willing to cooperate, they are likely to move your case forward faster. Cooperation and thinking of your children first is the best way to show you are a devoted parent before the judge.
Remain level-headed throughout
We must reiterate the importance of considering your child/children’s well-being during separation. While we understand emotions run high, you must ensure your children are unaffected by anything that may cause them emotional distress.
Avoid talking negatively or criticizing the other parent in front of your kids. This kind of behavior will not only have a negative impact on your kid’s mental health, but it may harm your custody case as well.
Instead, maintain a level head throughout the custody case, no matter the other parent’s behavior.
Custody Cases: The Most Important Considerations
Divorces involving custody are complex and need to be handled with extra caution. If you have children under 18, you and your former partner need to figure out the issues pertaining to custody. The following are the most important considerations during child custody.
The children’s best interests
While you and your spouse can make most divorce decisions without court interference, custody is not as simple. The family law court judge can overrule a custody agreement between parents if they feel it is not in the children’s best interest.
If you and your spouse reach an agreement, the judge will review your decisions on visitations and custody before signing off on it. Under the term “best interest of the children” are the following factors:
- Your children’s health, safety, and welfare
- History of abuse by either parent
- The amount and nature of contact with the parents
- The history of each parent’s existing relationship with the children
- History of illegal use of controlled substances by either parent
You and your former partner must have the same view as the court when making your agreement. The most important thing is the well-being of your children, so try to set aside your own feelings of anger and resentment.
Compliance with court orders
It is important to remember that there may be legal differences from state to state regarding custody issues. For example, you must understand and comply with all court orders to win custody in California.
You should follow the requirements of the parenting plan, no matter if you are seeking sole custody or joint. If the judge sees that you comply with all court orders and requirements while the opposing party does not, they are more likely to grant you custody.
But, if both parties are following them, the judge may consider granting joint custody. If the judge grants you joint custody, you and your ex-spouse must follow a written custody agreement.
The written agreement will state the following essential arrangements for the children:
Child Custody: How to Start a Petition for Your Case
Child custody encompasses the rights and responsibilities of the parent caring for the child/children. There are two types – physical and legal custody.
Physical custody tells which parent the children mostly live with. The parent with legal child custody is the one who makes crucial decisions regarding the children. This includes decisions regarding healthcare, education, welfare, etc.
Legal and joint custody may be joint or sole. Joint custody means both parents share the rights and responsibilities regarding important decisions of minor children. In comparison, sole legal custody refers to only one parent having the rights and responsibilities for the children.
The following steps are how you file for custody.
Fill out the needed forms
You can visit your local family court to get copies of the forms or get the PDF versions from the state website. The forms required for custody in California are the following:
- Declaration under the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJEA) (FL-105/GC-120)
Make copies and file the forms
After you fill out the custody forms, you should make two copies of each form. The original form is for the court, while the copies each go to the parents. File the forms with the local court clerk and pay the filing fee.
Serve the other parent
If you are the petitioner, someone else must serve your ex-partner with a copy of the papers in person. Make sure to include a blank Response to Petition for Custody and Support of Minor Children (FL-270) and a blank UCCJEA form.
File proof of service
The last step is for your server to fill out a Proof of Service of Summons FL-115 (Family Law – Uniform Parentage – Custody and Support). After they fill out the forms, they must give it to you as the petitioner so you can file them with the court. This form serves as proof to the court that the other parent received the Summons.
So, if you wonder how to win custody without a lawyer, the answer is by preparing thoroughly and filing with the court yourself. Gathering evidence and remaining calm during the custody battle is also crucial for winning. It is also a good idea to get the help of an online divorce platform as it may provide guidance during the process and help with filing paperwork with the court.
Among the numerous advantages of not including lawyers include avoiding drawn-out custody battles and exorbitant legal fees.