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IS SLUGGING IT OUT IN DIVORCE COURT THE WAY TO GO?
by Dr. Reena Sommer

During the past decade the nature of custody battles has changed. In fact, custody battles have become quite complicated. It used to be that it was just a matter of determing what was in the best interest of the child. This often involved having the divorce attorneys for both parents make their cases before the court. Back then, divorce court judges generally ruled that young children should be with their mothers and fathers should pay support. And in return for that, fathers could have standard visitation. What that meant was their ability to parent was limited to weekend visits, if they were lucky since most divorce courts left the whole issue of visitation open and usually at the discretion of the mother.

Today, things are a lot different. First, joint custody is now the accepted choice for divorce decisions involving children. Divorce courts now recognize that in most cases, it is in the best interest of children to have both parents remain involved in their lives. As such, divorce courts are making sure that fathers remain actively involved in their children's lives and are not just a source of child support. Second, divorce courts are also recognizing that both parents are responsible for caring for their children financially. Given the increase in dual income families, this has also resulted in a shift in how child support awards are being ordered by divorce courts.

These developments in family law have in turn impacted on the nature of custody battles. We are now seeing that the motivations for fighting for child custody go well beyond what is in the best interest of the child. and at times have nothing at all to do with children. In many cases, money plays a major role since child support is often linked to who is the primary residential parent. In other cases, children are used as a bargaining chip for an unequal division of marital property or assets. Finally, pure hostility and revenge are often powerful motivators in custody battles. In the worst cases, there is often a combination of these factors. You may have figured out by now that fighting for custody is both complex and emotionally taxing.

Divorce attorneys are well adept at dealing with arguing a custody case in a legal arena. However, most divorce attorneys lack the background needed to present the very complex dynamics and underlying issues of a custody case to a judge. In these cases, having a well defined custody battle strategy to be used in and out of divorce court can make a difference between success and failure or winning and losing custody. Unfortunately, when presented with a parent who is making unreasonable demands, most people's initial inclination is to wait it out with the hope that with time, that parent will become more reasonable. This is a huge mistake as most unreasonable parents fighting custody just become more entrenched over time.

The earlier a custody battle strategy is implimented, the more likely your chances are for success.

Need More Information?

Everyone's concerns are unique. For that reason, Dr. Reena Sommer offers a brief "no obligation" telephone consultation. Please call her with your questions and concerns at 281.534.3923



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Dr. Reena Sommer & Associates PLLC 蟀
Houston, Texas
PHONE: 281.534.3923

DRREENA@CUSTODYTRIALCONSULTANTS.COM