Things to Have for a Child Custody Case

By Dan Taylor

Child custody battles are often a part of unpleasant divorces, which are never easy for you or the child. Judges usually weigh the actions and environment of the two people fighting for custody to determine who would serve the best interests of the child. To increase the odds of winning custody of the child, you will need to come to the case prepared.

Custody Plan

Come to court with the custody plan you had in mind, which may impress the judge. Present a custody agreement that you and your spouse could potentially accept, such as dividing holidays equally and what kind of visitation hours the other person might have. Draft a basic schedule and bring it to court.

Record of Activities

Bring a detailed record of your activities with the child each day that will show just how involved you are in the child's life. Consider keeping a small diary to record activities with your child to give the court idea of how you interact with the child on a day-to-day basis. Bring a list of activities outside the home, such as getting the child involved in church or taking the child on trips or outings. This might show to the judge that you are focused on the child's overall moral and social development.

Medical Records

Bring the medical and dental records you received when you took your child to the doctor or the dentist. Proving that you are the parent who provides for basic medical care for the child will go a long way toward convincing the judge that you are a parent that will keep the child's best interests at heart. You might also want to bring witnesses who will testify that you took the child more often than the other parent.

Activities Outside the Home

Bring a list of activities outside the home, such as getting the child involved in church or taking the child on outings. This might show to the judge that you are focused on the child's overall moral and social improvement.

Witness

Bring a witness who has known you for years and has seen you interact with the child. He must be willing to testify in court that you are a good parent. Consider asking relatives, teachers, doctors or neighbors, for example.

Evidence Against Spouse

Bring evidence that the spouse can't be as good of a parent. You might show evidence of the spouse's overwhelming work schedule, any police records for incidents such as domestic abuse or a record of any comments the child has made that could be used to show the parent is neglectful or abusive. Keep detailed records of anything that could negatively affect the child's life.

About the Author

Based in the Washington, D.C., area, Dan Taylor has been a professional journalist since 2004. He has been published in the "Baltimore Sun" and "The Washington Times." He started as a reporter for a newspaper in southwest Virginia and now writes for "Inside the Navy." He holds a Bachelor of Arts in government with a journalism track from Patrick Henry College.