When you’re faced with a custody battle, you’ll likely want to do everything in your power to win, or win back, joint or sole custody of your child(ren). A highly experienced child custody lawyer armed with the right evidence from you can help you build a case to do just that. Below, you’ll find some examples of evidence that can work in your favor in a custody case.
8 Pieces of Evidence You Can Provide Your Child Custody Lawyer
1. Communications with Your Former Spouse
If you’ve been in contact with your former spouse regarding custody, then keep records of this. Take screenshots of text messages and keep their record on your phone, too. Keep and print out emails. Save any voice recordings to or from your spouse on the matter.
Display that custody is something that’s always been important to you and that you’ve been continuously stating your willingness and ability to co-parent and care for your child(ren).
2. Communications with Your Child(ren)
Any parent seeking custody of their child(ren) should be able to display evidence of a continuous healthy relationship with them. Show your attorney you’ve been in constant contact via texts, phone calls, emails, or even social media chats such as Facebook Messenger.
Ideally, the messages should be positive and display the close relationship you and your child(ren) have. Your Houston child custody lawyer will value this highly and use it in court to display the close bonds you have with your child(ren).
It would be a good idea to start journalling during your divorce if you feel there’s a custody battle ahead. Note interactions with your former spouse, your child(ren), and your former spouse’s interactions with your child(ren). Show that you’ve been taking an active role In parenting up until now.
You can also use journalling as evidence against a former spouse you feel should not have custody of your child(ren). If any concerning incidents would make your family unsafe in a joint custody situation, then your journal will show a record of them.
Provide your attorney with the names and contact information of as many witnesses as you can. Other family members, teachers, babysitters, and close family friends can all give witness accounts in your favor if you’re trying to win custody of your child(ren). In cases where the other parent is unsuitable for joint custody, then the witnesses can also back up any claims you’ve made about your former spouse.
The people who know your child(ren) best and who have witnessed your and your spouse’s interactions with them will be invaluable in providing evidence during a custody hearing. Even people who’ve only casually seen your interactions in passing, such as neighbors, will be highly useful to contact for witness statements.
Take photographs of your living environment to show that it’s a safe and stable place for a child to live. If you want to take things a step further, photograph your street so the judge can see that it’s a safe neighborhood for children to grow up in.
General photographs of day-to-day life will also help show your role and your former spouse’s role in caring for your child(ren) and how it’s in their best interests for you both, or just you, to be involved.
6. Social Media Posts
Social media posts are highly valuable pieces of information to help display a continued love and affection for your child(ren). Posts about their birthday or simply special days you’ve had out will display that you’ve had an active role in caring for them and that you love them enough to post such things online.
If your former spouse has any inappropriate social media posts that would work as evidence against their ability to co-parent or their suitability to have joint custody of your child, then these will also work as evidence in your case.
7. Calendar Dates
Spouses may argue about the dates of incidents and events that occurred regarding the child(ren). Ideally, you should begin taking note of all events in a calendar at the start of your divorce proceedings. That way you have verifiable evidence to back up your claims when discussing events that occurred on a particular date. If you were calendaring before your divorce, then you can use these records as evidence, too.
8. The Child(ren)’s Wishes
If you have any communications displaying the wishes of your child(ren) regarding your living situation, then present them to your attorney as evidence. The courts sometimes take these very seriously.
Providing your attorney with as much evidence as possible in your favor during a custody case is vital. Proofing your willingness to co-parent, your involvement with your child(ren) day-to-day, and your competence as a parent will go a long way in helping you win custody in this case.