The other day a paralegal sent our business an email asking where she could find child custody forms and papers for her state. I was surprised that someone in the legal profession was asking this question–aren’t the attorneys and their staff supposed to know these things? Her email made me realize that custody forms and papers can be confusing and overwhelming for anybody. So, to help bring some clarity to the subject, here is some information about the child custody forms and papers that you need for your custody case.
The first thing to figure out is where you can find the papers you need. This is complicated because every state has different forms to fill out. So, you need to find the forms and the laws about custody for your state. The good news is that most states now put their custody forms online–you just need to search for you state and custody papers. Double check to make sure that any paper you’re filling out for custody is for the state that you live in. Also make sure that any advice you’re getting about custody applies to the state that you live in. You can also get the custody forms that you need at the courthouse. Generally, you go to the district court in your county to get these–it’s the same court where you file for divorce. Any courthouse that you go to should be able to direct you to the right place.
When you’re filling out the papers, make sure you have the right ones. This can be tricky because many times you fill out different forms depending on your circumstances. For example, you may need fill something out if you and the child’s other parent don’t agree on custody and you may fill out a different paper if you do agree on custody. Most of the forms that you get online have explanations. You can look for more resources because sometimes the explanations are confusing. You can always go to the courthouse and ask about the papers. And, if you have an attorney, your attorney should answer any questions that you have (and help you fill out the papers).
Take your time when you fill out your forms. Make sure that you have some quiet time to concentrate so that you can fill them out properly. Check all of the information that you have on the papers–because the courts will check it and if there are errors they won’t be accepted. Do it right the first time so you don’t have to keep filling them out.
You can take a lot of the difficulty out of filling out your custody forms. Expect to spend some time figuring out where to get the forms and how to fill them out. Once you’ve put in your time and double checked them, you’ll be ready to file them with the court and move on with your case.
Article Source: Child Custody Papers and Forms: Information You Need to Know
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