Child Custody Lawyer Rockville MDChild Custody Lawyer Rockville MD

What happens when there is a child custody dispute between unmarried parents?

Answers from a Child Custody Lawyer Rockville MD Turns to for Answers

When a dispute over child custody arises between unmarried parents, a child custody lawyer in Rockville MD from the Law Office of Daniel J. Wright can be consulted for guidance. To speak with a skilled family lawyer from the Law Office of Daniel J. Wright, call us. We may be able to help you reach a positive solution for a difficult situation.

What happens when there is a child custody dispute between unmarried parents?

Most people will associate child custody matters with a divorce; however, divorcing parents are not the only ones who have to deal with these issues. Unmarried parents and grandparents might also be involved in a dispute regarding visitation rights. In some cases, other relatives may be seeking a relationship with the child, including the right to visitation or custody. Regardless of your role, you may benefit from the guidance provided by a child custody lawyer in Rockville MD from the Law Office of Daniel J. Wright.

Child Custody Matters Between Unmarried Parents

All states have laws regarding child custody. In general, if the parents are not married, and the mother is considered to be of good character, the father will not win full custody. However, with the help of a child custody lawyer in Rockville MD from the Law Office of Daniel J. Wright, he may be able to secure part time custody and/or visitation rights.

When a child custody dispute arises between unmarried parents, legal options are similar, if not the same, for a divorcing couple.

Visitation, child custody, and child support may be resolved through an amicable agreement between the parents or at the discretion of a judge in Family Court. The most notable difference between unmarried and divorcing parents is that the former may not have to deal with the division of financial assets and alimony. If this is the case, the parents can focus more on resolving custody and visitation issues. If custody and visitation issues cannot be resolved between the parents, they may need need to go before a judge who will make the final decisions.

Non-Parental Custody of a Child

Grandparents, aunts, uncles, and other relatives or close family friends may seek custody of a child. This usually only occurs in certain situations that may involve factors such as:

  • The parents are unfit to care for their child.
  • It is not in the best interest of the child to live with his or her biological parent(s) for a reason that is recognized by the court. An example might be that the parent must work in a location or environment that is not suitable for the child.
  • The biological parent(s) have died, are incarcerated, hospitalized, or physically or mentally incapacitated.

Some states will refer to these situations as obtaining guardianship rather than non-parental custody. Regardless of the term used, there will be a special procedure for determining the role of each parent in the child’s life. Usually, this will include petitioning the court for custody. It may be beneficial to hire a child custody lawyer in Rockville MD from the Law Office of Daniel J. Wright who can guide you through this process.

Visitation Rights of Grandparents

It is possible for grandparents to enforce their rights to visit their grandchildren. Every state has a variation of grandparents’ rights when it comes to the law. If you are being denied your right to see your grandchildren, consider talking with a child custody lawyer in Rockville MD from the Law Office of Daniel J. Wright.

Get Legal Assistance Today

Any dispute involving child custody can be extremely stressful, time consuming, and emotional. With the help of a skilled family lawyer, you can ensure your rights and children are protected. To discover how we can help you with obtaining the custody or visitation terms you desire, call a child custody lawyer in Rockville MD from the Law Office of Daniel J. Wright today.

The Law Office of Daniel J. Wright

If you need a child custody lawyer Rockville MD trusts then you’ve come to the right place. The Law Office of Daniel J. Wright will fight for your rights, and help steer you through the difficult process of obtaining custody of your child.

Courts often make important decisions in child custody cases on the basis of very questionable testimony, and sometimes make poor decisions. Unfortunately, parent and child must live with those decisions for years. You must present your case in the most positive light possible to the court the first time. You have only one chance to make a positive first impression with the court. In that regard, many parents fail to realize that their behavior in the months leading up to the custody hearing is critical to the success or failure of their case. Daniel J. Wright is an experienced child custody lawyers Rockville MD residents count on who can help you avoid those mistakes, and achieve a positive resolution of your case.

Child custody cases often take six months to a year from the date of filing to the date of a custody decision. During that time, the parties’ behavior is under the microscope, and will be considered by the court. Parties seeking to gain legal custody need to behave maturely, and consider the effects of their decisions on the children. Daniel J. Wright is a child custody lawyer in Rockville MD who can help you make sound decisions for the benefit of your children, while avoiding common pitfalls. For example, it is not a good idea to pass messages to the other parent through the children. It is not a good idea to limit telephone access to the non-custodial parent. It is a good idea to take the high road, to make decisions in the best interests of your children, and not to go ballistic over petty infringements caused by the other parent’s insensitivity.

Courts will respond better to a positive plan showing your efforts to achieve a better life for your children than they will mud slinging and degrading the other parent. A child custody lawyer Rockville MD recommends would give advice that every parent get involved in their child’s school, for example. Every parent should go to back-to-school night and get to know their children’s teachers. Then stay in touch with them. Daniel J. Wright recommends that parents help their children with their homework often. Parents should know how their children are doing in school, how often they have been late or missed classes, and what classes are strong and what classes are weak.

If a parent is being denied visitation, or just wants to have more time with the children than the current schedule provides, then a visit to a child custody lawyer Rockville MD provides, Daniel J. Wright, may help sort out these issues. Mr. Wright has experience modifying custody and visitation, as well as enforcing visitation orders through contempt proceedings. The courts will not intervene if the violations are trivial – one missed visit or a late return. Some parents try to take advantage of that by consistently gaming the system and refusing to allow visits that are provided in a custody order, or refusing to inform the other parent of important developments in the life of the child. If that is your situation, call Daniel Wright, a child custody lawyer Rockville MD relies on.

How Do I Construct a Successful Co-Parenting Agreement?

Learning to co-parent your child once you and your child’s other parent are no longer romantically involved is often a uniquely stressful challenge. As you may be aware, judges are bound to make child custody determinations based on the “best interests of the child” standard. Who understands the best interests of your unique child better than you (and possibly your child’s other parent as well)? It is partially because parents are usually the most knowledgeable authorities on their children’s best interests that judges often insist that co-parents construct a co-parenting agreement as part of their child custody determination process. Similarly, parents seeking to avoid “courtroom confrontations” may decide to construct these agreements even if they have not been ordered to do so by a judge.

It is important to understand that once a co-parenting agreement becomes part of a child custody determination or formal arrangement that it will almost certainly be considered legally binding. It is partially for this reason that it is important to consult an experienced Rockville, MD child custody lawyer when drafting your agreement. Failing to receive proper legal guidance now may lead to sincerely negative situations down the road that may otherwise be avoided.

Drafting a Successful Co-Parenting Agreement

When preparing to meet with a Rockville, MD child custody lawyer about creating a successful co-parenting agreement, it may be beneficial to jot down some thoughts regarding terms you believe would most benefit your child’s best interests. For example, what proposed parenting time schedule would best serve your child’s need to bond with both parents? How could you and your co-parent most effectively approach your child’s health-related and educational needs? Does your child need for you and your co-parent to remain flexible about certain issues and to maintain rock solid expectations related to others? The key when preparing for a co-parenting agreement consultation with a Rockville, MD child custody lawyer is to focus on your child’s best interests. As hard as it can be to put your own personal needs second, this particular process will need to focus on your child’s needs first. With that said, if failure to meet one of your most pressing needs will impact your child negatively, that reality should factor into the discussion at hand.

How To Explain Upcoming Custody Changes to Your Child

Getting divorced can be stressful for a lot of reasons. Not only are you separating from someone who was very important to you, but you also need to navigate the rocky aftermath with your children. Many adults struggle with past trauma related to divorced parents, so how you treat your children in the coming months and years will be important to their mental health. While this seems like a lot of pressure, child custody lawyers in Rockville, MD like Daniel J. Wright can help you figure out how to explain upcoming changes to your children. Here are some tips to help you plan the conversation. 

Communicate Clearly

Kids tend to be a lot smarter than adults give them credit for. If you dance around the hard topics or omit too much information, your kids may be able to tell. Trust is key, and this is an opportunity to further build that trust. 

Explain Upcoming Changes

Since the changes will likely already be decided thanks to help from child custody lawyers in Rockville, MD, you can go through the list with your children and help them work through the changes in their schedules. At the same time, you should highlight all of the parts of their lives that won’t be changing. Stability is important, and the consistent parts of their lives can help them stay grounded. 

Avoid Unnecessary Details 

While clear communication is important, it’s also important that they don’t hear the unnecessary details that could harm their mental health or their relationship with their other parent. Explaining why the time was split up the way it was could be seen as belittling your ex-partner’s circumstances. You also shouldn’t bring up child support or other financial matters. If you’re not sure how to approach certain topics, your child custody lawyers in Rockville, MD can help. You don’t need to get into the reasons for the divorce, but don’t forget to assure your children that they are not at fault. Any custody changes you want to pursue in the future should not be discussed, and you certainly shouldn’t make any promises about increased time with them. 

Make Time for Questions

This can be a tense and confusing time, so it’s normal for kids to have questions. This isn’t a time for you to talk at your children, but with them. Their concerns deserve to be heard as well. 

Don’t Shy Away From Help

This is a difficult time for the whole family, but you don’t have to go through it alone. Your children may benefit from speaking to a therapist, and family therapy can be helpful for everyone. There are many resources available just waiting for you to use them.

If you need child custody lawyers, Rockville, MD has many waiting to help you, like Daniel J. Wright. Taking custody of your children is a big step, and you’ll need the right legal team at your side. The right attorney can help you navigate this stressful life event with your best interests in mind.

How To Know When To Fight for Grandparents’ Rights

You probably thought that when your children grew up, you were done raising kids, and child custody would never be an issue for you to resolve. However, now you have grandchildren, and challenging adult situations are making it difficult for you to be in their lives.

Read on to learn whether it’s time to hire a child custody lawyer in Rockville MD to explore your rights as a grandparent. Every state recognizes grandparents’ rights, and Daniel J. Wright may be able to help you.

Your Child Won’t Let You See Their Child

As a grandparent, you may be able to fight for visitation with your grandkids. If your son or daughter (or their co-parent) is restricting your access to their child, or if you aren’t able to see that child at all, you can retain the services of Daniel J. Wright to fight for visitation.

You can also request an investigation of the welfare of your grandchild if you feel that he or she is in harm’s way during the time you aren’t able to see them. If the circumstances warrant it, a child custody lawyer in Rockville MD may even be able to help you gain custody of your grandchild.

Your Grandkids’ Parents Are Dead

In cases where your child and your child’s co-parent have passed away, you are the rightful next of kin to their children, and you can petition for their custody. In some cases, you may be awarded custody as a next of kin, even without a formal custodial hearing in family court.

Grandparents are a logical and reasonable choice to take over guardianship of a child after the parent’s death, and Maryland family law recognizes this factor.

The Child’s Parents Are Unfit 

If you have reason to believe that your grandchild’s parents are unfit, neglectful, or otherwise abusive, you have a responsibility to contact a child custody lawyer in Rockville MD to fight for their well-being.

Your grandparents’ rights allow you to petition for custody if your grandchild’s parents are mentally or physically unable to care for them. You can even petition for custody if the child’s parents live or work in a dangerous environment.

Grandparents play a vital role in the life of a child. Whatever your situation may be, your grandchild is lucky that their grandma or grandpa cares enough about them to look into grandparents’ rights in order to keep their best interests in line. Contact a child custody lawyer in Rockville MD and keep fighting for your rights to be in your grandchild’s life.

How To Prepare for Your Child Custody Hearing

Prepare Your Documents

Each jurisdiction has different rules about what is admissible in court, but most courts will consider your phone conversations, child support payments, visitation schedule and child’s needs. You may also include any police reports. You may also bring information about your children, such as the schools and daycares they attend as well as any extracurricular activities or special needs. Your proximity to and ability to pay for these services may be taken into consideration. Consult with your child custody lawyers in Rockville MD to determine what documents you need to bring.

Learn About Custody Hearings

Custody cases are determined entirely by a judge. No jury is involved in any part of a custody hearing or appeal. Therefore, the custody decision should be quick. Therefore, you should discuss the judge in your case with your child custody attorneys. They can tell you what questions you will be asked and how the judge typically rules in custody cases. As attorney Daniel J. Wright can tell you, most courts weigh the best interests of the child. Some use a better-parent standard if they plan to award sole custody.

The judge will ask about your home environment and ability to care for your children. Depending on your children’s ages, they may be asked who they want to live with. However, this may be hard on your children emotionally.

Most courts today try to award joint custody because these judges understand how important it is that children spend time with both their parents. However, the judge should always rule in the children’s best interest, so if abuse is involved, this will be considered in the custody judgment.

Study Courtroom Etiquette

How you behave and dress in court can have an impact on the judge’s custody decision. For example, if you speak out or argue at inappropriate times, this tendency can have a negative impact on your custody case. Most judges understand that the custody process is emotional, but they need to know that you can act professionally and be courteous in the courtroom and with your children. Judges are human too, and they may make judgments about you before they even learn your children’s names based on your actions and attire.

Therefore, work with your child custody lawyers in Rockville MD to determine the etiquette required in your local courtroom and by your local judges. A reputable attorney, e.g., Daniel J. Wright, may suggest doing some role-playing before you go to court.

Child Custody Guidance Is Available

If you are interested in drafting a co-parenting agreement or have been ordered to do so by a judge, please consider scheduling a consultation with a Rockville, Maryland child custody lawyer experienced in co-parenting agreement construction. Depending on your unique circumstances, you could potentially benefit from working with a child custody mediator in addition to working with an attorney. If you have questions about the pros and cons of such an arrangement, please do not hesitate to ask the team at the Law Office of Daniel Wright either during your initial consultation or at any other time. Asking questions is a valuable way to ensure that you are able to make informed decisions about your legal options and your child’s best interests. An experienced Rockville, MD child custody lawyer will be happy to answer questions in a prompt and professional manner.

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