5 Ways To Protect A Child's Best Interests In Legal Matters

As experienced, compassionate and knowledgeable family law attorneys, we have gained insights over the years into ways families can help their children weather storms. A divorce or a modification to a child custody order will have a great impact on children. Parents can protect children's best interests and general well-being in a number of ways. Take these recommendations as general advice. Consult with an attorney to discuss the particulars of your children's needs in your unique family situation.

1. Consider your child's perspective in a divorce, a stepparent adoption, a custody modification, a grandparents' rights issue or any legal matter. What may be difficult for you — such as collaborating with your soon-to-be ex-spouse or communicating with in-laws — can be vital for your child's well-being.

2. Work with your attorney and your child's other parent to arrive at a workable parenting plan that the court will accept. The parenting plan should put your children's needs first while protecting parental rights. Remember that the family law court's expectation always focuses on the best interests of the child in the case of a divorce, separation or custody modification.

3. Remember that child support is for children. Parents pay, receive and use child support money for the sake of meeting children's needs: shelter, food, clothing and more. An experienced family law attorney can help you understand how child support is calculated and how to petition the court to deviate from the typical dollar amounts if there are compelling reasons to do so.

4. Keep your parent-child relationship alive and as active and close as it was before the divorce or other legal matter. Naturally, you have heavy issues on your mind. However, your child needs you as much as ever. His or her sense of well-being will be greatly affected by your ability to stay as connected as before — or even more so. Preserve and strengthen your parent-child bond in spite of a separation, divorce or other family change.

5. Don't think you have to go it alone. Lean on your extended family and friends to help you through the transition if possible. Get counseling for yourself and/or your child, separately or together or both. Join new activities with other parents and children to cultivate your child's "village" just as you did before the separation or divorce. Allow your child's teacher, your pastor or other religious leader, your child's scoutmaster, neighbors and friends to help as they can. The big picture of your child's health, safety and welfare includes much more than the divorce or other legal matter. Draw on all available sources of support, including your family law attorney.

From law offices in San Antonio, Leeser Law Firm PLLC represents clients throughout Texas. To schedule a free consultation with an experienced lawyer, call 210-904-8477 or send an email inquiry. We will do our best to reply promptly.