Who protects the children in a custody divorce?
Custody cases involve an element not shared by other court cases… children. Children’s needs can be swept aside by adults who are caught up in a heated dispute.
When a child custody case feels out of control… with no end in sight, the appointment of a child’s attorney may be the answer. In Oregon, the court has the authority to hire an attorney who works in a family law or divorce case to represent the rights of a minor child.
An attorney for the children can be appointed by the court to protect your child’s best interests in child custody and divorce cases. As your child’s attorney, we will assure that everyone remains focused on the child’s best interests. It is a child’s lawyers job to make sure the child’s voice is heard and to help the child as much as possible to understand how their parents divorce will change everyone’s lives. A child’s attorney is responsible for investigating the facts and advocating for the child’s best interests.
The child’s attorneys job is to protect the child while moving the case to conclusion. If the case is stuck and going nowhere, the child’s attorney must act as a catalyst to move the case forward. If the parents are ferociously tearing at each other, the child’s attorney must calm the storm. If everyone is frustrated and out of ideas, the child’s attorney must help everyone think outside of the box. The child’s attorney must confront and educate mis-guided parents with regard to their responsibilities to the child. The child’s attorney must openly examine the situation and then communicate the child clients needs with everyone in a manner they can understand. If the child’s attorney is unable to move the parents into a settlement that is in the child’s best interests, then the child’s attorney must see that the trial judge hears all of the evidence that will assist the court in making the best decision possible for the child.
Depending on the age and maturity of the child, the child’s attorney may need to educate and assist the child in understand the legal issues at stake. In other cases the child’s attorney may merely act as the child’s shield, fending off inappropriate behavior by others in the case.
Children have rights! It is the child’s attorneys job to assure those rights stay at the forefront of everyone’s mind during a heated custody or divorce dispute. We recognize the needs of children when it comes to their understanding of the custody and parenting decisions made by their parents during divorce. We are especially adept at communicating with children of all ages and in gaining the trust needed to maintain an effective child attorney relationship. We will develop alternatives and solutions that may not have previously been considered. It is our goal to see that the child’s best interests are kept at the forefront of everyone’s mind during the custody divorce process.