A custody lawsuit is a serious matter. Many parents fighting for custody of their child, however, make the mistake of not treating it as such. They are often incredulous that their right to their child should even be at issue. This makes them go in unprepared; they believe that they only have to show up and assert their right. It doesn’t work that way, however. You need to approach a child custody case with great earnestness. Preparation is everything.

Don’t sabotage your own case

Parents fighting for the custody of a child are often angry, and do things that hurt their chances. It’s common for parents fighting for custody to try any number of unfair moves — take their child out of town or to another school with no warning, fail to pay child support, make angry accusations in front of other people and so on. It’s important to make every move with caution and deliberation.

Read up

Every state has its own set of laws on how child custody cases are judged. Georgia, for example, has the Parenting Plan, which states in detailed form, every single requirement of the way a parent is to provide for their child. Every parent fighting for custody is expected to provide in detail, information about vacation schedules, transportation arrangements, and an ability to communicate, among other things. It’s important to learn about what is expected, and put a plan into place for each requirement. You need to read up.

Investigate when you need to

According to Martinelli Investigations of Atlanta, child custody hearings are often filled with uncertainties. The more information you gather about the other parent — an upcoming military deployment, an illness, an employment situation, a relationship with an unsuitable person- the stronger your case becomes.

Investigations begin with information that you already have control of, however. It’s important to keep detailed record of every single instance of contact with the other parent, and information learned at each event.

Make sure that you can make a strong case as a fit parent

The better the quality of life you give your child, the more likely you are to win custody. It’s important to be able to prove every single assertion that you make in this direction, however — your employment and income, the housing arrangements that you’ve made, your relationships, your educational qualifications, and so on.

Your record-keeping should extend to every part of your role as parent. You need to keep a detailed journal recording every school activity that you attend, every church activity that you take your child to, and every vacation. As far as possible, you should have witnesses who can corroborate your story. You also want to gather information on how the other parent may be doing poorly in these areas.

Winning custody is a major venture, and you need to understand that simply being a good parent doesn’t cut it. You need to go about it as if you were preparing for a job. Everything needs to be proven. When you’re able to do this, you win.