One of the most stressful parts of any divorce or child custody legal battle is the uncertainty of the future. Having someone else involved in all of your parenting decisions can cause a lot of anxiety about your child’s well-being, especially if you have valid reasons for wanting to minimize your ex’s influence. It may make everything easier for you to have legal sole decision making and parenting responsibilities, but sole legal decision making isn’t awarded based on making either parent’s lives easier. Arizona courts award legal decision making (custody) based on what’s best for the child. Here is everything you need to know about how to get sole legal decision making in Arizona.
Agree Sole Legal in Mediation
If you’re looking for how to get full sole legal or full custody, one of the simplest ways is for both parties to agree to it in mediation. Mediation is an attempt to come to an agreement between both parties without having to fight it out in court. Court-appointed mediators will work with both parents and their legal counsel to find a solution that is acceptable to everyone. If that fails, you’ll have to take it to court and let the judge decide, so it’s in everyone’s best interest to reach an agreement in mediation. Even if both you and your ex agree that you should have sole legal decision makeing or custody, it’s not a guarantee that Arizona courts will agree that’s what’s best for the child. Though if you have a strong case and everyone agrees, this will be the simplest way to get full custody.
Prove a Lack of Interest
Another way to get full custody in Arizona is if it’s clear there’s a lack of interest from the other parent. This might apply in cases of abandonment, and will protect you from raising your child on your own for years after the other parent has left, only to have them return years later and force their involvement. If you file for divorce and ask for full custody, and your ex never responds, you will also most likely be granted full custody due to their failure to show any interest in parenting their child.
Make a Strong Case for the Child’s Best Interests
If you know you’re likely to have a fight on your hands and are wondering how to get sole legal or full custody in court, your best chances lie in establishing a strong case for the child’s best interests. Whenever the decision comes down to the court, they will try to keep both parents involved, but ultimately the child’s safety and well-being will be the biggest deciding factor.
If you have a foolproof reason why the other parent’s decision-making responsibilities and parenting time should be limited, you’ll have a very good chance of being awarded sole legal decision making. For instance, if the other parent has a history of domestic violence or abuse, substance abuse, neglect, or mental illness, you will be able to make a strong case that being placed under their responsibility could pose a danger to the child’s mental and/or physical well-being.
Don’t Do It Alone
Anyone wondering how to get full custody should know that this is not something you have to do alone. Most likely, this is the biggest fight of your life, and can seem utterly overwhelming and even frightening. The best way to ensure you get the results you want is to find a guide who has a track record of success navigating custody battles, and whom you can trust to represent you and your child’s best interests. For more information about how to get full custody, contact Simon Law Group, PLLC, today.