It is no secret that family law courts are often seen or perceived as biased against men, especially when it comes to child custody. Slowly but surely, there is a shift in the system. The campaign is working and more courts are recognising the importance of fathers being involved with their children albeit very slowly. Regardless of this reassuring shift, a bias is still present and many men find themselves in what seems like an uphill battle with their cases. If you are going through a divorce or custody battle, it is important to know your rights and develop the best strategies for your situation.
Try Mediation in the first instance
We try to discourage parents in the first instance from using solicitors and barristers, spending fortunes on needless legal actions. The average case cost often ranges from £10,000-30,000. We strongly advocate for Mediation which gives more power to the necessary parties and the children. An ounce of mediation is worth a pound of arbitration and a ton of litigation. Mediation is empowering and allows parties to find a resolution as opposed to one being dictated for them.
Choose the Right Legal team
This seems like it should be common sense, but many men wind up losing in the courtroom because they picked the wrong legal team. Picking the wrong legal team is a very expensive mistake
Pursue Child Custody
One of the main complaints fathers have after their divorces are settled is they do not see their children enough. Men often settle for less time with their children than they would like under the mistaken belief that judges are likely to award primary custody to the mother.
Stay Involved in Your Children’s Lives
it is necessary to maintain a presence in your children lives and ensure that you can prove this involvement. For example, if a divorce drags out and your ex-wife can truthfully say that you have not seen your children in months, it will be difficult for you to argue for child custody. You do not want to give the court any reason to believe you are uninterested in your children or their wellbeing. Continuing to give them both emotional and financial support is imperative.
If you are the custodial parent during a separation or divorce, it is critical that you do not restrict your ex-wife from visiting the children. Unfairly restricting her access without a court order will only hurt you in your divorce proceedings. You should strive for amicable co-parenting and joint responsibility. If you are struggling to work out the details, please contact a mediator to help you.
Avoid Lashing Out During a Divorce
Avoid texting insults and threats. If your partner behaves badly, practice professional maturity. Any reaction to an action could be very costly in a family court. Again, if you are experiencing this situation, consider engaging a mediator for optimal communication.
At all costs necessary, avoid participating in any petty or vengeful behaviours. This can easily be spun into evidence of instability, even if you feel you were pushed to it. Instead, disengage and document the behaviour; it will only help you in your proceedings.
Stay positive in all situation and ensure you continue to look after your mental health.