A custody battle might be every divorced parent’s worst nightmare – but for fathers, custody rights take on a whole different meaning. Texas dads have it better than some: about 50% of fathers looking for sole custody are eventually granted it, but it takes a lot of work. For some divorcees, the only way to protect their children is through a child custody investigation conducted by a professional. And if that’s the case, then a private investigator can help.
If you’re new to the areas of divorce and child custody, hiring a private investigator might seem like a drastic step. It isn’t. That’s because there’s no such thing as a drastic step when it comes to your children’s welfare. Their safety comes first, because in Texas it’s not about the gender, it’s about who’s the better parent. The Texas Equal Rights Amendment of 1973 ensures that judges cannot rely on the sex/gender of a parent in determining custody. That means fathers have custody rights equal to mothers, and hiring a PI to sort it all out can save you time, money and heartache, while limiting the amount of damage an unfit parent can do.
There are certain things you need to consider about how to gain custody of a child:
Age: There’s a MASSIVE difference between a breast-feeding infant and a pre-teen. In fact, if the child is at least 12 years old, a judge may consider that child’s preference.
Cooperation: Are you and your ex-spouse able to come to mature, rational and mutually supported decisions? If you’ve gone through a divorce, and the child custody arrangement isn’t working, a judge will look at you and your ex to see if the problems are being caused not by the arrangement, but by your mutual unwillingness to work together.
Character: So many child custody investigations lead to proof of poor character on behalf of one spouse or another. Fathers seeking custody rights are often granted sole custody because the mother has proved unfit in some way.
Stability: Do you have a job, while she does not? Do you have health care, while she does not? Do you have a better home in a better suited neighborhood, with spaces for bedrooms for all children? Are you the one playing the role of “Mr. Mom” while she is out with her friends or doing things for herself? All of these things matter in a child custody investigation.
Hiring a Professional for your Child Custody Investigation
There are almost 2 million single dads in America, which makes a father’s custody rights a much bigger issue than one might think. But unless you’re a lawyer who specializes in family law, you probably don’t know much about divorce and child custody, nor about how to get your fair share of time with your children. If you’re like most single parents, all you know about how to gain custody of a child comes from Internet blogs or TV – and that’s okay. But it’s not going to get you sole custody of your child. Hiring a private investigator can help. A PI is a certified, licensed and professionally-trained individual who is not only familiar with the laws, but knows exactly how to determine if your ex-spouse is breaking them.
So what does a PI do?
- Surveillance: Most private investigators use video surveillance to see if your spouse is spending enough time with your child, leaving the child in precarious situations, and/or treating the child well. Surveillance has been successfully used in court as evidence to give fathers custody rights of children who are being neglected or otherwise mistreated by their mothers.
- Research: PI’s know the laws regarding divorce and child custody – period. They have access to research and files that might not be available to you, which means they can lead a much more thorough child custody investigation than you could. This understanding of the laws saves you time, money and aggravation. It can also lesson the anxiety associated with courtroom visits.
- Documentation: A good private investigator documents EVERYTHING: everything s/he sees, hears, reads and/or writes. This leaves a “paper trail,” so to speak, that can help justify your reason for seeking out sole custody of your children.
You wouldn’t hire a roofer to replace your plumbing, right? So why wouldn’t you take advantage of a service that knows how to gain custody of a child? Divorces are difficult enough on fathers: custody rights shouldn’t add to the stress. So if you’re a dad seeking sole custody of a child because you believe his/her mother is a negligent, abusive or an unstable parent, it’s time to gather the evidence that proves you’re a better parent. Hiring a professional private investigator is the first step in ensuring the safety and well-being of your childre