hire child custody attorney

Finding a Child Custody Lawyer

Goldberg JonesChild Custody, Featured Posts 26 Comments

Few things in this world are as important to us as our children. That’s a huge part of why custody cases frequently become fraught, heated exchanges. We just want what’s best for them and we’re willing to fight for it.

When these cases turn contentious, it’s usually a good idea to enlist the services of an experienced attorney. But the question remains: how do you find the best child custody lawyer?

Finding The Best Child Custody Attorney

The term “best” is relative. What’s best in one situation isn’t necessarily what’s best in another. There are many fantastic family law practitioners out there, but it’s important to find the right match for you.

In reality, we should be talking about “the best fit for the needs of your case.”

To that end, here are some qualities to take into account when looking for the best child custody lawyer to represent you and protect your interests. These aren’t the only ones, by far, but it’s a jumping-off point.

Experience in Similar Cases

Knowing your case needs and looking for an attorney who fits those parameters is a good place to start. A few examples:

    • Is this going to be a complicated case?
    • Can you and your ex only communicate by screaming at one another?
    • Do your child and ex live in another state?
    • Does the child have special needs?

Whatever the specifics of your situation, the best child custody lawyer is likely one with experience in similar cases. Find someone who fills your needs.

Related Reading: Breaking Down the Child Support Formula

Knowledge of Local Laws

Laws regulating child custody and other family law matters vary a great deal from one state to the next. For this reason, the best child custody lawyer for you is one with in-depth knowledge and an understanding of all applicable regulations.

If your case takes place in your city, you probably want to hire a nearby attorney. But if another state has jurisdiction, you will want to consider finding local representation.

Related Reading: Jurisdiction and Divorce: Why It Matters

Specialization in the Field

The law is a wide-reaching monster. Even within the smaller subset of family law, there are specific areas of focus. When looking for the best child custody lawyer for your case, consider specialization.

Custody attorneys all practice family law, but not all family law practitioners focus on custody. If a lawyer’s primary interest is a high-asset divorce, they may not be the optimal choice. The State Bar of California Board of Specialization designates Certified Family Law Specialists, which is often a good place to start your search.

Related Reading: Divorce, Custody, and Military Service


Sometimes the best child custody lawyer is one you can afford. Hiring an attorney isn’t cheap. It’s important to consider your finances and know what you can and can’t spend.

When you talk to a lawyer, ask about billing practices. Know upfront how an attorney or firm handles charges. This often provides realistic expectations of the cost and helps manage expenses.

It’s also important to find out what you get for your money. Sometimes a more expensive lawyer offers more or is more efficient and winds up a better value. One lawyer may be more inclusive while another may charge for everything.

Related Reading5 Missteps That Can Hurt Your Custody Case

Ability to Communicate

Throughout your case, you have to communicate with your attorney. Your lawyer, in turn, has to communicate with judges, mediators, other attorneys, and your ex. Good communication skills are understandably an essential part of the job.

In addition to being comfortable with their abilities, you have to be able to accurately share your needs and desires. The best child custody lawyer for your case is one you can communicate with. It also goes the other way; they need to be able to convey complex information to you.

Related ReadingWhat is the Guardian ad Litem and the Minor’s Counsel?

Have Compassion

Child custody battles, especially contentious cases, are deeply emotional times. You’re going through a range of feelings, and so are the kids. And while it’s important to have an attorney who keeps an even keel, it’s also vital they have compassion for your situation.

You don’t want to hire a therapist or a stand-in best friend, but the ideal child custody lawyer for your case truly understands what’s at stake for you and your family. A little compassion is never a bad thing.

There’s no universal roadmap or one-size-fits-all formula to finding the best child custody lawyer. Every case is as different as the people involved, so what that means varies from situation to situation.

These aren’t the only elements to consider when looking for an attorney, not by a long shot. But they’re things to keep in mind as you conduct your search.

Related Reading: Types of Child Custody In California

Comments 26

  1. I like how you mentioned that you should look for a child custody lawyer that has knowledge of local laws, as they will be able to better fight for you. One of my cousins is going through a divorce with his wife and is fighting for custody of his child. These tips could help him find a great lawyer, so thank you for sharing them.

  2. It was informative when you said that not all family lawyers focus on child custody, so it is a good idea to ask them about it and if they specialize in it before hiring them for the case. I will take note of this because I am serious about my little girl being put under my custody. Since I have read a few things about the case and learned that it can be a bit complex, I agree with you that I need someone knowledgeable. Thank you for the info.

    1. Post
  3. My sister and her husband recently split up and my sister wants to make sure that she gets full custody of her kids, so I am glad that I found this article. I love that you say to find a lawyer who specializes in custody cases because they will be the most knowledgeable about my sister’s case. Also, I think it would be great for my sister to interview her top lawyers so that she can make sure they are good at communicating and easy to work with.

  4. I totally agree when you said that hiring the right lawyer is critical because they will be doing a critical role in your custody battle for your child. I will share this with my sister so that she will not be rushing into hiring an attorney. She just needs their services because she will be filing a divorce with her husband due to the constant problems that the guy is causing her for five years.

  5. Of course, I would want my child support attorney to have a heart. This is my child we are talking about here! I need help to protect him so I need a child support lawyer. I will be looking for one that has a heart so he can have compassion for my situation.

  6. I think it’s great that you mentioned how family law matters are not the same with every state. A good friend of mine is currently going through a tough separation, and the couple is still battling over child custody. I’ll be sure to advise him to look child custody lawyer in his area to guarantee that he’ll get the best legal representation he can receive. Thanks!

  7. My sister and her husband have recently filed for divorce and are now going to court over custody of their children. I really appreciate the advice in this article, it’s very smart to find a family lawyer specialize in this field. I’m sure it would also be beneficial to have a compassionate lawyer who understands what’s at stake for you and your family.

  8. That’s a good tip to determine the details of your situation. The law is vast. Lawyers often have specializations; even in already specialized fields like family law.

  9. I totally agree that one should choose a child custody attorney who has good communication skills, as they have to get in touch with different people such as judges, mediators, and even their client’s ex. One of my friends mentioned that she and her partner will be calling it quits, but one of her problems involve child custody. I’ll share this with her so that she’ll know how she can choose the best attorney to handle her case.

  10. I appreciate how you said that a family lawyer should know everything there is to know about laws. I also like how you said that they should be affordable for your budget as well. My aunt is looking for a family lawyer because her good friend is getting a divorce and needs the help.

  11. You’ve got great ideas for hiring a child custody lawyer. I like how you said that they need to have a heart and compassion. They’re dealing with people’s children, so they better have a heart for that!

  12. It’s good to know how to find a child custody lawyer. I can see why choosing someone who you can afford is probably a good idea. I have a cousin who’s about to go through a divorce, so I’m sure she’ll want to read this. She’ll have to find a good, affordable lawyer.

  13. I liked how you pointed out that experience with similar cases to your own can help ensure you have a good chance at getting a favorable outcome to your case. What would you suggest is the best way to evaluate what kind of experience an attorney has with child custody? I’d be interested to know since my friend is about to go through a divorce, and I’m sure she’ll want legal representation for her custody battle.

  14. My cousin is looking for a great lawyer to help make sure that she gets fully child custody. So I like your suggestion to find a local one if the case is taking place in your city since they will have the best understanding of local lawyers. I’ll be sure to tell my cousin that she should start her search for a child custody lawyer by checking out some of her local ones.

  15. It’s interesting to learn that it’s important to make sure that your lawyer is specializing in your case since as you’ve mentioned that not all family lawyers are specializing in child custody. That’s good to learn since my friend is having issues with her husband and is staying only for the kids. I know this is unhealthy for her, him, and their child that’s why I’ll do my best to convince her to get a family attorney that can help with her child custody. Thanks for the informative read about finding the best child custody lawyer!

  16. I really like that you mentioned hiring someone who specializes in child custody. My brother-in-law and his wife are getting divorced, and have two children. Having someone that focuses on custody will hopefully help them get through it quickly, for the children’s sake.

  17. I really like how you included in your article to find someone that has a heart. I think other than the obvious facts such as making sure they are experienced, the cost is minimal, etc. you should make sure they are compassionate and want to help you win your case. I recently just got divorced. My ex-husband and I had one child together and my lawyer really not only helped me win the case but was compassionate to my family and I the entire time. Thanks so much for sharing this! This really was a great article to read.

  18. I agree that you should consider the cost when hiring an attorney especially if you’re living on a tight budget. I hope I never experience this but I will definitely keep this in mind. Thanks for the advice.

  19. It may be true that you can easily get a lawyer, but finding one who deals with a child custody case may not be that easy. This blog provides truly great tips for picking the right child custody lawyer.

  20. My sister is going through a rough divorce and she has two of the cutest daughters. She and her ex husband isn’t agreeing on the girls’ arrangement, so I suggested getting a child custody lawyer. Thanks for including the advice to choose a lawyer that will fight for what she wants, but also has compassion for her situation specifically.

  21. My ex-husband and I can’t agree on the best custody agreement for our children, and we are now having to go to court for it. I like how you pointed out that when it comes to choosing the right lawyer to help me, I might want to consider getting someone who specializes in this field. This will really help me feel like they know what they are doing, and that they will do all they can to make this a successful case for me.

  22. I never considered how custody laws vary by state. I can see how that would be really important to have a lawyer to help navigate. Some parents even live in different states, so I can see how cases could get complex.

  23. I like that you mentioned to find a lawyer who specialized in child custody. I didn’t realize there were different specializations within family law. My friend is getting a divorce, and I want to help him find the best lawyer possible to help him keep custody. I will be sure to keep this in mind.

  24. It really is important for readers to understand that working with a child custody attorney is a team effort and that you have to talk with your lawyer. After all, they will need to know very important information from you if they are going to make a strong case for your custody. Not to mention that, by openly communicating with them, a lawyer is far more likely to become invested in your case and work that much harder to help you win.

  25. I didn’t know that different states and counties had different laws regarding child custody. Because of this, I definitely think it is a great idea to hire a local lawyer. Someone who not only knows overall laws, but those that apply specifically to your residential area.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *