If you are getting ready to seek custody of your children in Rhode Island, there are things you can do to prepare for court. As with any other endeavor, preparation is the first step toward success.
Before the hearing
Before your court date, you should study the state legislation so that you can be informed about the way child custody is awarded in the state. Take time to speak with your lawyer and ask any questions that will help you further understand the process and what you should expect on the day of the hearing.
During this time, you should also gather all the supporting evidence and documentation you might need to provide during your court date. Evidence and documentation might include:
- The visitation schedule
- Child support payment receipts
- Proof of communication between you and the other parent, such as phone logs or emails
- Any other documents that show your relationship with your child
You should also take the time to practice how you will speak and behave on the day of the hearing. Court etiquette is important, and your behavior during the hearing can affect the judge’s perception of you. During the hearing, you will want to avoid appearing overly emotional.
The day of the hearing
On the day of your custody court appearance, you should dress appropriately. The way you dress is the basis for first impressions with the judge, so make sure to dress professionally. Arrive on time with your evidence and documentation organized and ready to be presented in court.
Your family law attorney may be strong support as you prepare for your child custody hearing. Remember to ask any questions to clarify doubts or confusion. Your attorney may offer advice on how to dress and behave in the courtroom to make the best impression.