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Fighting for custody? These tips can help

Men sometimes get the short end of the stick when it comes to child custody in divorce. While they may be fantastic fathers, the reality is that most men are the breadwinners and were unlikely to be home as much as the children's mothers. That means that the men have less experience raising their children and may not even have had the time to participate in activities that their children were part of.

It's a sad truth, but those who cannot show the significance of their relationship with their children can be relegated to seeing them less often than they'd like, even if they've always been provided for by their fathers. Fortunately, if you know that a divorce is in the works, you can begin to take steps to assert your rights and to show how invested you are in your child's life.

How can you make the best impression for the sake of custody?

There are several things you can do to help judges look more kindly on you during the hearing or trial. One of those things is being there on time. Judges appreciate parents who are there on time, because it means they take their responsibilities seriously. It means that the parent is likely to show up on time to school events or be present in their children's lives.

Another thing you should do is have witnesses who can discuss your parenting skills. Don't just ask family members. You should ask teachers, local community leaders or anyone else who has seen you with your child. You want to be able to show that you are present in your child's everyday life and take an active interest in what they do.

Finally, look the part of a parent when you come to court. Even if you're the most alternative parent in the world, you should do your best to fit into the courtroom. Wear a collared shirt, slacks and try to cover any tattoos that might be offensive. Appear clean and cared for, so you can show the judge how you'd make sure your own child is cared for, too. Appearance may not seem so important, but it can make a great first impression on a judge.

The most important thing in child custody cases is going to be your child's health and well-being. If you can show that you're willing to play a role in their healthy upbringing, you should have the opportunity to do so with a fair amount of parenting time.

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