It’s always a struggle when a marriage ends. The idea of two people falling out of love with each other can be messy and complicated, especially when children are involved. However, if you and your partner have decided that divorce is the best option for you, there are ways to keep your divorce above board. Here are three ways you can ensure your divorce and custody battles stay firmly in the family law arena and away from personal injury law.
Put Your Best (Parenting) Foot Forward
About half of all married couples in the U.S. divorce. Even if you and your ex-partner are no longer on good terms, you owe it to your children (and the judge) to be the best version of yourself in court. Dressing and acting appropriately when you appear in court is only part of it; you also need to conduct yourself in the best possible way in front of your children so that the court sees no reason to remove them from your home. This means staying clean, sober, and refraining from bad-mouthing your ex-partner when your children are with you.
Understand Your Attorney’s Practice Areas
An attorney that specializes in personal injury law is great for someone who’s been in an accident but not as helpful in a divorce hearing. While many lawyers keep things pretty general so as to serve a larger clientele, make sure you confirm that your attorney is a qualified divorce lawyer before you hire them. Here’s a handy trick to finding the best attorney for you: if you’re searching online, try searching for “divorce attorney houma” instead of “divorce attorney” or “attorney in houma la.” Hiring your cousin who solely practices personal injury law might be convenient but it won’t turn out well for your case. Being specific about your city and situation will heighten your chances of finding a good attorney for you that can help you get the outcome you’re looking for from the court.
Show Willingness to Cooperate with the Judge
In all the fifty states, Louisiana has the fourth-highest divorce rate, with 20.8 out of 1000 married people divorcing in 2016. When you appear in family court, your judge has seen it all. However, the more you cooperate with the judge or Commissioner, the smoother your divorce will go. This may mean that you have to be willing to compromise on visitation or custody agreements with your ex-partner, but the judge will see your cooperation as a good-faith effort to make the best possible home for your children. The key to remember is that, while you may not love your ex anymore, you both still love your children and want to continue to do what’s best for them after the smoke has cleared.