Facing a child custody evaluation in Albuquerque, New Mexico can be stressful. Divorce and child custody arrangements can be some of the most difficult legal and emotional steps that any family can take. When you introduce a stranger into the equation whose role is to delve deeper into a family’s painful past, everyone may be facing new levels of stress. Often, evaluators are only hired or appointed in cases where both parents cannot reach an agreement about child custody and visitation. So, the good news is that if you and your spouse are able to work with a child custody lawyer like Elliot Green Law Offices to find an arrangement that works for you and your children outside of court, it is not likely the judge will appoint a child custody evaluator to review your case or family history.
Even if an evaluator is appointed to your case, it is important to remember that the child custody evaluator is there to determine what child custody arrangement is in the best interest of your child. Remembering that the courts’ goal and the evaluator’s goal is to find a solution that works for your family can help make the process much easier.
That said, if you’re facing a child custody evaluation, is there anything you can do to prepare?
According to the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts, one of the best things you can do if you’re being evaluated is to cooperate with the evaluator. While the evaluator’s job to find a solution that is in the best interests of your children, if you show hostility to the evaluator, this could reflect on how the evaluator sees you as a parent. Keep your appointments with the evaluator and arrive on time. If the evaluator requests documentation, make sure to have this information ready.
Your lawyer will also give you information about how to prepare for your meeting with the evaluator. Be honest and thorough with your lawyer so your child custody attorney can help you troubleshoot any difficulties that may arise. While it is important to be honest with the evaluator, how you present and document information can make a big difference in the outcome of your case.
Pay attention to details. For instance, if a child custody evaluator is planning to visit your home, make sure your home is clean and organized. The home life you can provide for your child matters. What’s in the refrigerator? Do you offer healthy food choices? Every little detail makes a difference.
Visit Elliot Greens website https://www.elliotgreenlaw.com/divorce to learn more about family and divorce law.
Finally, when speaking to the evaluator, make sure that you differentiate between your partner’s role as a parent and as a spouse. Speaking poorly about your ex can reflect badly on your ability to help your child maintain a healthy relationship with his or her parent. Leave the marriage out of the interview and focus on your ex’s strengths and weaknesses as a parent.
Finally, most lawyers will try to work with both parents so that a parenting plan is worked out before the courts need to get involved. Drafting a parenting plan outside of court often allows you to have more control over the outcome. However, if you and your former spouse cannot reach an agreement, your child custody lawyer can also help you build a strong court case and prepare for meetings with evaluators in Albuquerque, New Mexico.