the court found that the mother had perpetrated physical and psychological family violence.
It was the children who confessed to their father that they feared for their lives around their mother. The eldest daughter, 9 years old, claimed that her mother grabbed her by the throat and lifted her from the ground. The daughter wrote to her teacher that when they stayed with their mother on alternate weekends, the latter had held her brothers under water because she was angry he took too long to wash his hair.
Family Court Judge, Nahum Mushin, in a decision supported by an Independent Children’s Lawyer, awarded sole custody to the father and banned the mother from seeing the children. She was only allowed to telephone and email them at set times. Judge Mushin explained that while the shared parenting law presumes that both parents would share equal responsibility for the children, it does not apply where there are reasonable grounds to believe that a parent has engaged in family violence.
Parents who wish to gain sole custody should think about the following features that could be considered during child custody proceedings:
In all family court proceedings the sole custody decision always rests on the best interests of the child. A parent should prepare clear reasons why joint custody of the child will not be in the child’s best interest. The court cannot make a favourable decision if the evidence provided by the parent is not adequate to support sole parent custody of the child.
Parents who wish to gain sole custody of a child should behave in a courteous and respectful manner when attending the court proceedings. They should dress appropriately too as if it is a formal occasion and they should also ensure that they present all the required documents.
Disclaimer : This article provides basic information only and is not a substitute for a professional or legal advice. It is prudent to obtain legal advice from a family lawyer.