Unfortunately, the outcome of many cases reveals that in some areas of the law, the fundamental principal of equality is too often shoved aside in favor of entrenched cultural biases. This is especially true in family law, where the traditional views of gender roles in a marriage often dictate the outcome in child custody and divorce cases.
Every family law case is decided by one judge. A judge, like all of us, comes to their job with built in views on the roles of men and women in our society. Of course, every judge has a sworn duty as a judicial officer to set aside their personal biases, but in reality no human is immune from letting some clear or hidden bias influence their final decision in a particular family law case.
If you are forced to deal with a biased a judge in a family law case, there may be some things you can do to battle these biases.
Be a Daily Presence in Your Child’s Life
Even in an age where women can and often do earn as much as their male counterparts, the traditional views on the roles of men and women in a family have roots going back hundreds of years. When it comes to your children, you may find that the judge expects the mother to be ever present in the child’s life and the father to be the one working to support the family with his income.
Fair or not, if you are a mother trying to balance a career with raising a child, you may encounter tougher scrutiny if you are not present for your child’s school functions and extracurricular activities.
If you are a father seeking joint or sole custody, you may be battling decade-long beliefs that children are simply better off primarily residing with their mother. That is why it is so important that you are not only there for the big moments in your child’s life, but also that you are there on a daily basis.
Regardless of whether you are the mother or the father, you need to be prepared to show a genuine involvement in your child’s life. You should help your children with their homework when possible. If you anticipate a possible child custody dispute, it would be a good idea to keep a documented record of all of your contacts with your child and the persons in your child’s life that they encounter on a regular basis, including teachers, coaches, tutors and religious leaders.
Take the High Road
One way to dispel a judge’s bias is by presenting yourself as a reasonable and compassionate person. Whether it is in front of the judge, or in written correspondence, try to avoid getting into heated arguments with your soon-to-be ex-spouse or the other parent of you child. In some cases, you may find that the person who fosters negativity and nastiness loses credibility with the judge, and your overall likeability can influence him or her to side with you.
If your ex wants to drag you into a mud-slinging contest, let them be the one who loses sympathy with the judge by remaining level headed and rising above your ex’s vindictiveness.
Call the Family Law Attorneys at Wallin & Klarich for Help
If you are getting a divorce or seeking to gain custody of your children, an experienced family law attorney can be a powerful ally. At Wallin & Klarich, our skilled and knowledgeable attorneys have over 35 years of experience helping clients obtain the best possible outcome in their family law cases. If you choose Wallin & Klarich to guide you through your family law case, you can trust that your case will be in very capable hands.
With offices in Los Angeles, Sherman Oaks, Torrance, Orange County, San Diego, Riverside, San Bernardino, Ventura, West Covina and Victorville, an experienced Wallin & Klarich family law attorney is available nearby no matter where you are located.
For a free phone consultation, call (888) 749-7428 today. We will be there when you call.
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