The guardian ad litem (GAL) appointed to represent your child's best interests during your Virginia child custody case carries serious clout in the courtroom. Your child's guardian ad litem has influence over your Virginia child custody ruling which is second only to the judge's.
With this in mind, here are several pointers to keep in mind when dealing with your child's guardian ad litem:
- No confidentiality – You have no privilege of confidence with the GAL. Anything said can be repeated to the other side.
- A guardian ad litem carries authority – Your child's GAL has the authority to inspect any records about you and your child. Honesty is the best policy, as is brevity, when answering their questions.
- Neutrality is required – The guardian ad litem is a neutral party regarding parental rights. She will come from the position of equal parental rights.
- They deserve your respect – Be respectful to the GAL at all times. Never bicker or sound-off about your frustrations with your children's father.
- They are experienced – You may attempt to ingratiate yourself with the GAL, but he or she is used to this by experience and may even react with suspicion. Be pleasant, but be yourself.
- Accommodate a GAL's requests – Always be accommodating to the GAL's requests for appointments. Also, remember the courts will likely favor the parent who shows they are willing and able to co-parent. Whenever possible, demonstrate your accommodation to the father for the GAL to see with his own eyes.
Learn more about the role of your child's guardian ad litem during your Virginia child custody proceedings by visiting our article library.
At Hofheimer Family Law Firm, we understand that the health and happiness of your children is your #1 concern. We will work with you to address any fears and anxieties you may have about your children's future. Our women's-only divorce attorneys will guide you every step of the way to ensure that you achieve the best possible child custody and child support arrangements for you and your children.
To learn more about your Virginia divorce, request a FREE copy of our guide, What Every Virginia Woman Should Know About Divorce, or reserve your seat at our monthly divorce seminar – 757-425-5200.