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If you are in the middle of a custody dispute, you may think you can resolve the matter by working with the child’s co-parent and not involving lawyers. Keeping attorneys out of your custody matter, though, may not be a wise approach.

Attorneys explain legal options and fight for their clients’ best interests. Therefore, it is often critical for any parent to have an experienced child custody attorney on his or her side. This is true for three important reasons.

1. Lawyers understand complex custody laws

If you have ever read a statute or court opinion, you know how technical legal writing can be. Often, understanding a principle or law requires referencing many different sources. While you likely have a variety of talents, you may simply be incapable of understanding Texas’s complex child custody laws.

Most attorneys, by contrast, have access to extensive legal resources. They also have in-depth training that helps with digesting complicated matters. If your child’s co-parent has a lawyer, representing yourself in a custody dispute may be a terrible idea. After all, you may quickly find yourself outmatched in open court.

2. Lawyers keep tabs on details and deadlines

Child custody cases are often detail-specific matters. Accordingly, the outcome of your case may turn on a small legal or factual point. Good lawyers have the knowledge and training both to identify relevant details and address them in a proactive way.

While details are often critical in custody matters, deadlines can make or break any legal case. If you miss an important deadline, you may irreparably harm your standing in court. Because lawyers have infrastructure for managing deadlines, though, you can leave deadline compliance to your legal counsel.

3. Lawyers present your case favorably

As the old saying goes, there are two sides to every story. If you are in the middle of an emotionally charged custody dispute, you can expect the child’s co-parent to present you in the worst light possible. This fact may anger you or make you feel sad.

Your lawyer is not likely to feel these same emotions. Instead, your legal representative presents your case in an unemotional way that is favorable to you. That is, he or she can highlight specific facts that better position you for the outcome you want.

While presenting your case favorably is critical, your custody attorney can also attack your child’s co-parent’s case. If there is something that makes the co-parent unfit, you can be certain a good attorney will find it.