It doesn't matter what else is going on in your personal life, you (and your co-parent) are still the most important person in your child's life. It is so important that kids can maintain meaningful relationships with both of their parents, that both parents are involved in their upbringing, share responsibility, and provide a safe and loving environment. Normally, terms like child support and child custody strike fear in the hearts of separating couples. It doesn't need to be that way.

What Is Child Custody?

While lay people still use the term child custody, family law courts do not. The family law act instead refers to a parenting plan, parenting order, and parenting arrangements. First, parental responsibility is shared. Each parent has the responsibility to provide love and care for their child. Parenting time, however, is different. That is decided with a custody schedule and may requite family mediation through compulsory family dispute resolution if you cannot come to an agreement. You share parental responsibility equally unless the family law courts decide otherwise. This may occur in situations where family violence is present or there is a safety issue.

No matter what, arrangements for children will always boil down to this: the best interests of the child. If you think the end of your relationship is stressful, think about how it will impact your children.

3 Strategies To Win Child Custody

If you are pursuing custody and do not believe joint custody arrangements are in the best interests of your child, then you will need to apply to the court and go through compulsory family dispute resolution. It might be stressful, but there are three important strategies to used to win child custody.

Custody Agreements

When you separate, you should immediately establish a custody agreement favourable to you. Often, couples fall into a default arrangement as they await their court date. By the time you get to court, the family law court is more likely to adopt the status quo. Ensure that you spend as much time with your children as possible upon separation. That means being the person who lives with the children and takes the position of primary caregiver.


You have to work together because if you don't it will go against you. Everyone you deal with at the family relationship centre will pay attention to how willing you are to work with your ex. You don't have to like them, but unless they're a danger to your child you have to include them in your child's life and work with them for their benefit.
Do not badmouth your ex. Do not attempt to alienate your child/ren from your ex or their family. Encourage your child/ren that it's okay to love your ex. Do not post on social media about your ex. Be prepared to work together.

Document, Document, Document

If you believe your child/ren would be unsafe with your ex, then you need to keep careful documentation of all interactions you (and your child/ren) have with them. Just know that they might be doing the same about you so it's important to take the advice in point two. Do document negative behaviours like your ex making social media posts about you, threatening or degrading emails, texts, or phone calls. This type of evidence is important.
Finally, you may want to consider an in-home custody evaluation. If you think your ex might try to present you negatively, a visit like this will help you in your attempt to win custody.

If you want to win custody, then you need to know what factors family law courts use to determine cases. Focus on those factors. It all boils down to what is best for your child/ren emotionally, mentally, and physically. The onus is on you to demonstrate that you are best equipped to cater to those needs and provide them with a positive and safe environment.

Author's Bio: 

Christina is a proud mother, entrepreneur, author and world traveller. Previously a successful businesswoman who gave it all up to raise children, Christina spent a lot of her free time during those years flipping through books and learning about a plethora of topics. She hopes her books will inspire and motivate others to do what makes them happy and to achieve their goals.