Bringing Evidence to Family Court


To demonstrate the reality of a divorce or child custody case, it usually takes more than recounting the he-said, she-said interactions between co-parents.
 
Family law attorneys can present evidence to demonstrate the truth of the co-parenting situation. Bringing evidence to court creates a clear record and provides support for the claims that each parent is attempting to prove. Having correct and clear documentation regarding custody exchanges, verbal or written agreements, and custody schedules are only part of the evidence that can be useful. Social media exchanges, texts, phone records, photos, and other tools can be valuable sources to create a more holistic understanding.
 
 

How to Collect Evidence

 
It is much harder to create evidence when you must dig through years of conversations across multiple platforms, try to remember dates that have gone by, or dig through old mail. Keeping a clear record of everything that happens between you and your co-parent should be something that you start as soon as a separation takes place. Keeping a journal and logging important dates is a great start. Tracking custody dates and exchange locations in a calendar will also be helpful.
 
Co-parenting communication services such as Talking Parents help parents in these situations by logging all communications, calendar events, and journal entries in one place. You can learn more here. Talking Parents’ Certified Printed Records are available for order or downloaded (depending on your plan), and can be presented as evidence.
 

What Not to Do

 
Without a logical foundation for evidence, judges may reject it or allow the other parent’s attorney to object. For that reason, it is important to demonstrate the relevance of the evidence that you provide.
 
Additionally, a judge will not consider evidence that has been acquired illegally. Recording someone without their knowledge is not legal in most states and cannot be presented in court, just as breaking into someone’s home to get information would be against the law.

How to Prepare

The Discovery Process is the time when each parent puts together the information that they need to build their case. Discovery gives everyone the chance to have the correct documents and the same amount of information that the judge will have access to see. Both parents can request documents, including conversations and other physical evidence.
 
Prepare a list of all the evidence that you are bringing to court. Make copies of each paper/photo that you want the judge to consider for everyone involved.