When two parents file for divorce and are unable to determine a mutual agreement in regards to a parenting plan, then they have no other choice than to go to court to seek a child custody order. When this occurs, the judge has the final decision on the child’s future.
Besides considering the best interests of the child, the judge also takes into account the history and actions of each parent. To aid in this analysis, family law courts often appoint child custody evaluators to assess each party’s claims and figure out a recommended custodial plan.
Unfortunately, there are many times when a good parent ends up being classified as unfit or neglectful due to the following simple and avoidable mistakes:
- Get arrested. One of the most obvious ways one parent can be seen as unfit is by getting arrested while the custody dispute is pending. Even if the parent is not charged or convicted, the other parent has proof that they are more qualified to be the custodial parent.
- Disobey the court’s temporary custody orders. The court may issue temporary interim custody orders that will remain in place until trial. Disobeying or disregarding the court’s temporary orders can give the parent the ability to show the judge that other does not respect the court’s authority.
- Refuse to communicate and co-parent with the other party. If parents cannot agree on joint custody, then the judge may determine that one parent should have sole decision-making authority due to the other’s refusal and inability to co-parent.
- Display poor judgment on social media. In many cases, parents will go on social media while in the midst of a custody dispute to vent their frustrations, insult the other parent, or even show off to their friends about how fun the newly-single life can be. However, information and imagines on social media can be available to the public.
If you are interested in filing for divorce or modifying a current child custody order in Tennessee, contact our Jackson family law attorney at Casey, Simmons & Bryant, PLLC today.