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3 things not to do in a child custody case

You're heading into a child custody case, and winning is everything to you because your children are everything to you. Above all else, you don't want to lose them.

That's understandable. However, it's very important not to decide that you'll "do anything" just to fight for custody of the kids. It can blow up in your face. Below are three things that you should not do -- but that people make the mistake of doing all the time.

1. Don't lie.

The allure is simple: If you make up a story about your spouse, you can make yourself appear to be a better parent. That can help you win. Parents have lied about serious things like drug usage and domestic violence. Never do this. The truth will come out and you'll lose the case.

2. Don't refuse what the court asks.

For instance, you may be told that you should go to counseling. You don't want to go. While you can refuse to comply, that hurts your case. Go along with the court and prove that you're dedicated to being the best possible parent.

3. Don't bash your spouse.

Don't complain about your spouse to the kids and try to turn them against him or her. If you have valid concerns, it's fine to bring them up. But don't get in the habit of being petty and insulting your spouse just because you're frustrated and angry.

Above all else, just make sure you know your legal rights and what options you have. Trust the system and work to show that you deserve custody rights.

Source: The Spruce, "14 Dos and Don'ts for Winning Child Custody," Jennifer Wolf, accessed Aug. 10, 2017

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