Jacquelyn S. Gonz, Attorney At Law Llc

How single dads can secure child custody

Media often portrays single dads as careless fathers who only want to be the “cool dad.” They want to go to hockey games and drink beer while changing the baby’s diaper. To the media, being a single dad is usually the butt of the joke.

However, being a single father is incredibly challenging. It is especially tricky when you don’t have access to your children due to a custody agreement. Luckily, single dads can seek joint or full custody of their children.

Four tips to gain child custody as a single father

Many fathers are intimidated of custody battles due to the popular belief that mothers always receive primary custody. However, Missouri courts consider the best interests of the child before determining custody. There are ways that single dads can show how their presence improves their child’s life:

  1. Connect with your child daily – children need strong relationships with both parents to develop social skills and understand the world around them. Fathers can play a crucial role in their child’s life by connecting with them daily. You can even call them every day to ask about school or sports.
  2. Show responsibility – dads can easily demonstrate accountability to the courts by paying child support on time or maintain accurate records of their visits. Little acts of responsibility show that you are willing to invest time and effort to be in your child’s future.
  3. Be prepared – single fathers need to prepare their environment for children. You will want to designate a specific room to your child or provide them a space for specifically for them. You will also want to plan out where they will go to school and how you will provide for your child. The court wants to know you are thoroughly prepared before granting any custody.
  4. Discuss options with your former partner – custody battles in court are not pleasant for anyone, especially for parents. You may be able to discuss other options with your child’s mother to determine custody. For example, mediation is an excellent option if parents agree on a parenting plan.

Unfortunately, proper preparation cannot guarantee child custody. Your best strategy is to fight for a presence in your child’s life and seek the right representation to fight for you in court.

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