You know in your heart that you have a commitment to winning custody of your child. But you may feel overwhelmed when it comes to proving you deserve custody. You may also be dreading a drawn-out battle with your ex-spouse. 

All custody negotiations and divorces are unique, and there is no fool-proof way to ensure you get custody every time. However, here are three tried and true guidelines you should follow to increase your chances of seeing favorable results:

1. Realize perception is everything

You need to be aware at all times that it matters how the family court and judges perceive you. Some things you can do to make a good impression include:

  • Getting to your court appointments on time
  • Dressing properly for court.
  • Being respectful to the judge.

Do everything in your power to show the court that you are an involved, competent, supportive and loving parent. 

2. Be willing to collaborate

While you should fight for your own interests, do not be unnecessarily stubborn. Show the court that you can be flexible by compromising on certain things. As long as neither you nor your ex are abusive or struggling with addictive substances, they generally want both parents to be as involved as possible. Prove you are willing to work with the other parent.

3. Do what the court asks

Now is not the time to be difficult or feel offended. If the court asks you for documentation, provide it as soon as possible. The court may even require you to seek counseling or take parenting classes. Do not act out of spite or think you do not need to adhere to court requests. Do what is asked of you to show you are committed to your children. 

One crucial tip to remember during your custody battle is that the needs of your children always come first. Consider these guidelines as you negotiate child custody.