Two Against One. A lawyer for the child may increase your odds of winning the child custody case.
Posted December 10th, 2015.
Categories: Custody Tips.
Nearly every state permits the court to appoint a lawyer to represent the child in a contested custody case. While each parent may have a separate lawyer, the child’s interests are not always well-protected or well-represented by either attorney. Therefore, under court rules in most states, a third attorney can join the case — a lawyer for the child.
Of course, most cases won’t require a third attorney. In most cases, the court will be able to render a decision based on the representations of the two parents and their lawyers. One parent is likely to be the custodial parent. In other cases, however, the parents are so contentious and so focused on their own rights that a third lawyer is necessary to sift through contradictory testimony and to speak on behalf of the child. An attorney for the child can also interview the child and may ferret out certain truths that are not readily available.
Asking the court to appoint an attorney for the child can be a brilliant tactical maneuver in the right case. When a vital piece of information is disputed, a third lawyer can resolve the dispute by arguing either in favor of the mother’s version or the father’s version. Indeed, a lawyer for the child may side with the mother or the father, and may recommend that one parent or the other be awarded custody. In this regard, a third lawyer functions as a tie-breaker. Instead of Plaintiff’s lawyer versus Defendant’s attorney, the case would become a case of “two against one” – giving a decided advantage to the parent whose lawyers shares the same position as the child’s lawyer.
So, while an attorney won’t be appointed for the child in every case, getting the court to make this appointment (in the appropriate case) can truly increase the odds of winning the custody case.