Settling child custody disputes can be emotional and difficult for both parents after a divorce. Parents in Alabama and elsewhere want what is best for their children. However, there can be disagreements between parents about what is in their child’s best interests.
Some parents are able to settle child custody matters on their own. Often that is preferred because parents have the best understanding of what the family dynamic is. However, in some cases, courts must intervene.
For instance, a court may intervene and strip a parent of their parental rights if it is determined that the parent has been abusive or negligent. A parent could also lose their parental rights if they abandon their children. In addition, if a parent has an untreated mental illness or addiction or has failed to maintain contact with the child, they could lose parental rights. Long-term incarceration could also cause a parent to lose parental rights.
In all child custody cases, the courts goal is to provide the child with a safe home and to ensure that their needs are met. Parental rights are usually only terminated if there is proof that a child’s safety is in danger and the parent is doing nothing to fix the situation.
A parent who is going through the divorce process would be wise to consult with an attorney. An attorney can work on behalf of an individual to help resolve child custody matters.
In some instances, a parent may opt to settle child custody matters through mediation. By settling matters through mediation, parents can avoid going to trial, saving them time and money.
Source: Reuters, “How Can You Lose Permanent Custody of Your Child?” Stephanie Rabiner, Esq. April 5, 2012