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How can a Florida parent avoid a child custody battle?

| Apr 6, 2021 | Family Law |

Divorce is stressful, especially if for parents who happen to disagree over child-related issues. If the parental relationship is contentious, it can sometimes lead to a long, drawn-out court battle, such as it has been for Hollywood superstars Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt. This child custody case may help other parents avoid a similar situation by keeping a few things in mind.

Accusations of unfit parenting require proof

If a parent seeks sole custody of his or her children, he or she must be ready to support the allegations by providing evidence to the court. In Jolie’s case, she has repeatedly made accusations against Pitt, stating that he was physically and emotionally abusive during their marriage. However, a representative speaking on Pitt’s behalf recently stated that the court has reviewed each of her allegations and found them to be without merit. If a parent wishes the court to rule in his or her favor, there must be sufficient evidence to show that the other parent is, indeed unfit for custody.

Character witnesses may influence the court’s decision

Jolie and Pitt are the parents of six children, one of whom is now an adult, aged 19. He testified in court against his father, a rare circumstance. Depending on which side of the issue a parent is on, either as a parent bringing allegations before the court or the one being accused, witness testimony is an important factor to consider when preparing for a child custody trial.

Always keep children’s best interests in mind

This is, perhaps, the top priority in most child custody cases in Florida and beyond. If parents demonstrate a willingness to cooperate and treat each other respectfully for the sake of their children, they can often achieve a fair settlement. If, on the other hand, like Jolie and Pitt, each parent is accusing the other of acting out of revenge, it can create stress for parents and children, which can cause significant delays in proceedings. Children fare best in divorce when parents are willing to work as a team.