Is there any way to get child custody determined without a court order? - Child Custody Law Questions and Answers- LawQA.com

Free Answers to your Legal Questions by Lawyers.
ask »


Is there any way to get child custody determined without a court order?

Is there any way to get child custody determined without a court order or at least without an expensive attorney? If both parents agree on a parenting plan and sign and have it notarized, is there any legality to it? Or any document you can use in that manner?

Beresford Booth PLLC
Contact this Attorney Now

The Court will typically grant an agreed order regarding custody and parenting arrangements provided it is in the best interests of the child.

Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 6/17/2011

Law Office of Robert L. Fiedler
Contact this Attorney Now

The only "legal" way to do it is through a court.

Answer Applies to: Connecticut
Replied: 6/17/2011

Answer By Glenn E. Tanner
Glenn E. Tanner
Contact this Attorney Now

The court will consider such agreements but it is the court that decides parenting plans. You don't have to have an attorney to get a parenting plan. You don't have to have a parenting plan but the father could then disappear with the child and you'd be in trouble then.

Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 6/16/2011

Gregory T. Buckley, Attorney at Law
Contact this Attorney Now

For the agreement to be legally enforceable, you will want to have it done through the courts. You do not necessarily need a lawyer to this.

Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 6/16/2011

Answer By Maury Beaulier
Beaulier Law Office
Contact this Attorney Now

If the parties have an agreement on custody and parenting time, an action may be commenced and a Stipulation and Order submitted to the court for its review and entry as a Order. Although you may require an attorney to draft the relevant documents, it would be significantly less costly than a contested proceeding, or, for that matter, attempting to draft the documents yourself and doing so incorrectly.

Answer Applies to: Minnesota
Replied: 6/16/2011

Theodore W. Robinson, P.C.
Contact this Attorney Now

Yes, both parents can do exactly that, HOWEVER, in my experience of 37 years, it is cheaper in the long run to use attorneys because they know what has to go into such agreements and theymore often get it done right than when to regular people try to write up something that they want to be binding upon both of them for about twenty years hence. Usually, when you don't know exactly what you're doing, it's likely that you'll leave something important out or get it done wrong. I strongly suggest you use an attorney, just not an expensive one. Try a legal clinic at a law school or a low cost attorney who advertises low fees. Good luck.

Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 6/16/2011

Answer By Michael Rose
Michael Rose Attorney at Law
Contact this Attorney Now

A notarized piece of paper is not a legal document. All it says is that the person who signed it is that person. An agreement between the two of you is not enforceable without the stamp of the court. Do it right and then the terms that you agree to, or the judge sets, will be in writing and if one parent doesn't bring back the child you have remedies.

Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 6/16/2011

Answer By John Kirchner
John E. Kirchner, Attorney at Law
Contact this Attorney Now

Any agreement between the parents is good for as long as both parents agree to it and continue comply with it. As long as you never disagree or are able to solve disagreements on your own, there is no need for a court order. The problem is that unless it is approved by judge and effectively converted into a court order, there is no way to enforce the agreement if later on one parent decides not to comply. So, the question is not "is it legal?"; the question is "can you be sure both parents will always honor the agreement?" A big problem in answering that real question involves how good you are at predicting the future and guessing all the kinds of things that you and the other parent might disagree about in the future. Experienced lawyers can help you develop a parenting plan that answers the most common questions that might come up in the future that you aren't aware of right now.

Answer Applies to: Colorado
Replied: 6/16/2011

Answer By Shawn P. Hooks
Deal & Hooks, LLC
Contact this Attorney Now

Custody as you are describing it must be established by an order of a court. If there is an agreement it is entirely possible that you can do this without an attorney or without paying significant attorney fees. It is still a good idea to consult an attorney about drafting and submitting an Agreed Entry to the Court establishing custody and setting forth the issues of visitation and child support. Assuming there is an agreement this should not cost you that much money. The expensive fees take place when there is a dispute and multiple court hearings and discovery take place.

Answer Applies to: Ohio
Replied: 6/16/2011

Answer By Jay W. Neff
Law Office of Michael W. Bugni
Contact this Attorney Now

The best way to insure that you have an enforceable agreement/parenting plan is to have it entered by the court. In terms of avoiding the cost of an attorney, that is going to depend on you. Everyone has the right to represent themselves, if they want to. However, that is not always a good idea. It will depend on each of your ability to deal with the rules and details about getting a parenting plan entered. If you have that ability, then, you may be able to do it. If you don't, then, you are probably better off spending at least some money on an attorney.

Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 6/16/2011

© 2017 MH Sub I, LLC. All rights reserved.
Terms & Conditions | Privacy Policy | IB Cookie Policy