Communication key to resolving custody disputes

When California parents decide to end their marital relationship, they will still have a great deal to talk about. To avoid having a court many of the issues, they could reach an agreement between themselves. With respect to their children, the development of a shared custody arrangement outside of court could reduce legal costs and limit ongoing disputes. The achievement of these solutions requires communication.

Professionals such as mediators and counselors could help people overcome hostility and focus on making decisions. When working with a mediator, the couple will be steered toward productive conversations instead of arguments. The presence of the neutral third party could help the couple maintain a dialogue. The mediator will allow each party to express concerns and ideas and then attempt to broker compromises.

Parents who must work out a custody schedule and make decisions about schooling, religion, rules and sometimes parental relocation can choose to work with a counselor who often takes a therapeutic approach. Insights about communication barriers from the therapist could enable the parties to listen better and voice their concerns more clearly. The therapist will attempt to provide the parties with communication strategies that will allow them to come to terms.

Regardless of the approach, the need for legal advice could remain. To support long-term decision making, a divorcing spouse could gain information from an attorney about parenting plan alternatives. A family law attorney can often also be of assistance in negotiating a comprehensive settlement agreement that in addition to custody and visitation addresses property division and other applicable legal issues.

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    Attorneys Paul Gavin and Wayne Dersch are certified as a family law specialists. Learn More