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Does It Matter Who Files First for Child Custody?

Suppose you are in a situation where you need to file for child custody. Then you may wonder, does it matter who files first for child custody? Is there are any advantages to filing first? This is the most popular and frequently asked questions that a custody lawyer faces every day. The answer is NO. It does not matter who files first for child custody.

There are a lot of reasons behind it. Among them, one is the complaint or the pieces of evidence that you submitted to the court. However, when you raise your complaints first, then the court will take time. They will go through some formalities and so on.

In this writing, we will discuss all major factors about filing for child custody. And if it matters to file first for child custody. So keep reading!

Does It Matter Who Files First for Child Custody?

Almost all custody lawyers or lawyers agree that there are no extra advantages to file for child custody first. Because no court will be in your favor only because you submit your complaint first. Some internal factors will take time for the whole procedure.

On the other hand, if someone gets any advantages for filing their complaint first. Then, there are two important reasons for it.

  1. Complaining or filing first stands for that you are one step ahead in the litigation.
  2. You get the chance to speak first about your litigation, which will give you the potential to win.

The pace of litigation:

When you file first for your child custody, you will get control over litigation or settlement timing. Sometimes you will also have the chance to explain better about your complaints in the court. Filing your complaint first also means that you are eager and want to go for the settlement.

It also shows that you are no longer interested in compromising and want to go for the trial. If you file the case first, you can set the mechanisms of the legal system. In other words, you will be able to file and request a discovery at setting up the pace of litigation.

Presenting the case in the court:

After setting the pace of litigation, the next step is presenting your case in the court. If you file your case first, then you, as a plaintiff, will get the opportunity to present your evidence and witnesses first. Then the other party (i.e., the defendant) will present their case.

So, as a plaintiff, you will get the chance to speak twice. You and your lawyer will be on the offensive side not on the defensive side, in a simple word. Whether you file first or not, it is always better to speak with a family law lawyer as early as possible.

A family lawyer will help you to know your rights, options, and all the little details about the case. Also, a family lawyer will assist you in taking further proactive steps. Such as;

  • Gathering and collecting important evidence/information:

It is essential to collect and gather all the vital information regarding your case in a child custody case. When you have to present your case in court, you also submit all the relevant information in this regard.

Necessary information will help you to process in the case. So, you should keep all the information required ready before you file for child custody. A lawyer can help you by gathering all these data. Important information includes the parenting periods, bank account statements, and so on.

  • Preventing the assets from waste:

Suppose you and your spouse bought any assets in your child’s name. And if you think that your spouse can drain or hide all these assets. Then you can take any help from a family lawyer in this regard.

An experienced family lawyer will help to prevent your spouse from doing such kinds of activities. And they will ensure the proper share of your marital or child assets. In most cases, it is seen that the defendant party tends to do such kinds of activities.

  • Preserving the fault-base:

If somehow, your file for child custody is based on any faulty. For example, if you and your spouse or ex-spouse divorced before for any personal issues or anything. This will be considered as the case faulty.

In this situation, an experienced family lawyer can help you by providing you necessary navigation. Also, a lawyer can preserve your ground from losing. And again, they can give you the necessary advice that the defendant party may claim for.

  • Getting child support:

Child supports include the child’s educational expenses, health care, primary caretaking, and so on. Sometimes the court determines the child support based on the primary caregiver. It depends on how old the child is and also some other factors.

This problem becomes more complicated when it is a joint or shared custody situation. In this case, a professional family lawyer can be on your side in court. They can also assist you by providing the necessary advice that you need to get your child support.

Final Thought

As we see from the above writing, there are no significant differences between filing first or last.  But at least, if you file for your child custody first, then you may have some extra time to talk to your lawyer. You will have more time to prepare yourself for the court.

In order to get the child custody, what matters are gathering proper information, getting support from a lawyer, and so on. We hope that now you know how it really matters if you file first for child custody. So, hopefully, you have found the answer, “does it matter who files first for child custody?’