Married couples are usually expected to raise their children together, but that is not always possible. Spouses may divorce, separate or even annul their marriage and end up fighting for custodial rights over their children. The guiding principle in child custody cases is that the court should make a decision that promotes the child's welfare in the best way possible. In short, the child should be the ultimate winner. In many situations, the courts tend to award child custody rights to mothers because they are the natural care-givers. But irrespective of whether you're the father or the mother, you stand a good chance of winning custody of your child by following the tips below.
Demonstrate your active involvement in the daily lives of your child
As a parent, you are supposed to be actively involved in the everyday lives of your children. Sure you may need to work so you can pay the bills and cater to the financial needs of your family, but that does not mean you cannot set aside time to spend with your child. Simple things, such as attending your child's weekend swimming lessons, dropping them off to school, taking them out to the park or to watch a movie, helping them out with their school work, etc., can show that you are a committed parent. This can go a long way in showing the court that you have a healthy interpersonal relationship with your child.
Show you can provide a safe and stable home
How secure is the neighbourhood do you live in? How big is your home? How comfortable will your child be living in that house? How often will you be at home? These are some factors that can determine whether or not you can provide a favourable environment for your child to live in. Generally, the judge will award custody to the parent that can provide the most suitable home environment for the child to grow in. The child should be able to enjoy peace and quiet and also be protected from bad external influences, such as crime and gang violence.
Demonstrate you are willing to let the other parent maintain their relationship with the child
While you may have parted ways with your ex-partner, you should recognise that they will always be your child's parent and that the child may still need them in their life. Unless you have sufficient reason to believe that your ex-partner is a bad influence or a threat to the safety of your child, you should show the judge that you are willing to allow for joint custody or child visitation rights. Contact a family lawyer for more help getting custody of your child.