Oklahoma parents who are getting ready to dispute custody must prepare for the court hearings. During the hearings, they should have a variety of documents ready to show the court that can support their case in front of the judge.

Even before the hearing, the judge will be expecting supporting documentation with the original written request. This written documentation includes a submission that clearly states the person’s position and what they want the court to do. If the other parent has initiated the proceedings, their ex will receive the petition with the supporting documentation and have a chance to respond in written form. This response should also include supporting evidence.

Supporting documentation often includes call and visitation logs. These logs should state when the calls and visits occur, for how long they last and where they take place. When it comes to calls, it should also show if the calls were phone or Skype calls, for example. Call and visit logs can be very important in establishing the relationship a child has with each parent. Additionally, written testimony from neighbors, teachers, coaches and other adults who can securely speak about the relationship between the child and each of their parents is also helpful in determining the strength of that relationship. Other documentation that can be included are the child’s school and medical records to show how the child does while with each parent. Finally, in particularly difficult disputes, a custody evaluation can be used. This can be assigned by the judge or asked for by one of the parents.

Preparing for custody hearings is important. A parent may consult a family law lawyer for advice about how to prepare for the hearing and what documentation to collect to support their case. The lawyer may also represent a parent during the hearing.