If you are separating from your partner and you have children together, you may be struggling to decide whether you need to consult a child custody lawyer, or whether you can represent yourself during your child custody case. While you may be tempted to represent yourself in order to save money if you and your ex have had an amicable split, there are certain situations in which it is critical that you consult an attorney in order to ensure that your interests are protected. Here are a few of the signs you should look out for indicating that you should consult a child custody lawyer.
Your Ex Has Gotten a Lawyer
The most obvious sign that it is time to talk to a child custody attorney is if you have found out that your ex is already working with an attorney. If your ex has hired an attorney and you try to represent yourself, then you will be at an immediate disadvantage, as you will be trying to defend yourself against a trained and experienced child custody attorney. The last thing you want to end up feeling is regret if your case does not turn out the way you would have liked simply because your ex had an attorney and you didn’t. Hiring an attorney will ensure that you and your ex are on equal footing, giving you the best chances of getting the outcome you were hoping for.
Your Case Got Suddenly Complicated
Even if it seemed like you did not need a lawyer at first, you may want to consider contacting one if your case suddenly becomes more complicated than you expected. For instance, while you may not think that you need an attorney if you and your ex are amicable and can agree on a parenting plan, things can change suddenly overnight. The fact is that separations can be emotional, and you may suddenly find that your ex trying to gain full custody. If your case takes a turn for the worst, it is time to contact an attorney.
Your Ex Lives in a Different State
No matter how amicable you and your ex are, it is imperative that you contact an attorney if you and your ex live in different states. The fact is that child custody laws can be extremely complicated as it is, but when these cases cross state lines, things become even more complex. In this instance, you will need an attorney to help you determine what the laws are in each state, what laws are applicable, and what steps you will need to take as you proceed with your custody case.
Your Ex is Trying to Prevent You From Seeing Your Kids
With emotions running high after a separation, you may also find that your ex is suddenly trying to prevent you from seeing your kids. This is an all too common scenario, and it may start out subtle with your ex suddenly canceling or rescheduling visits. However, this can quickly escalate into them preventing you from seeing your children altogether. Once your ex starts to try to keep you from your children, it is time to contact an attorney who can look out for your rights and ensure that you retain custody of your children.
The fact is that custody battles can be complex and stressful enough without you trying to represent yourself. If you are separating from a partner with whom you have children, it is often best if you contact a child custody attorney in order to ensure that your rights are looked after. Contact us to learn more about how an attorney can protect you during a child custody case.