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Can I appeal a child custody ruling?

| Sep 15, 2018 | Child Custody |

During a divorce proceeding, St. Charles parents will leave it up to the courts to make decisions regarding child custody. If one parent feels the ultimate decision made was in error, he or she can file an appeal. Because this process is often complex, and because there is so much at stake, VeryWellFamily.com offers the following advice.

Only final and complete orders can be appealed

There are two factors that contribute to a custody order being final and complete. First and foremost, the hearing must be finished with no additional hearing dates scheduled for the future. Additionally, an order is only considered complete when all involved issues have been adequately resolved. If there are still decisions to be made, the custody decision cannot yet be appealed.

The importance of working with a lawyer

A child custody appeal starts with a brief. This document lays out the reasons for your appeal using the decisions made during the initial hearing. This document and those generated by the previous hearing will be reviewed by the court to determine whether the decision was made fairly. Having professional legal counsel is important in this case, as you want to make sure that all the details are accounted for. Much like in the original decision, the best interests of the child at the center of the custody dispute will feature heavily.

Things to keep in mind during your appeal

Unlike other types of legal appeals, you won’t be permitted to introduce new evidence during your custody appeal trial. You also won’t be able to solicit new witness testimony. The decision will be made solely on the initial hearing and the brief you present laying out the reasons for the appeal. Accordingly, it can be very difficult to successfully launch an appeal, which is why having the assistance of a skilled attorney is so important.