When a couple in Ohio gets a divorce, state law will likely play a role in determining who gets custody of the children. If there are reasons to believe that a child is in danger while spending time with a parent, the other may be given emergency custody. Parents who are seeking any type of custody of their children are encouraged to take notes and have other forms of documentation ready.

For instance, a statement from a child’s teacher or a neighbor may be useful in a custody proceeding. It could show that a parent has a drinking problem or is physically abusive toward a person’s son or daughter. Such information could be especially useful if a parent doesn’t have a criminal record. Absent a conviction, authorities may be limited in what they can do unless there is other evidence of abuse or neglect.

A judge may order that a parent undergo counseling, submit to blood tests or comply with other orders in a custody proceeding. Those who are going through a divorce may also wish to document any confrontations that they experience with the child’s other parent. Finally, parents should document anything that they do for the child such as taking a son or daughter to the doctor or to school.

It isn’t uncommon for a divorce to be one of the most emotional events in a person’s life. It may be tempting for an individual to try to use a child as a negotiating chip during settlement negotiations. However, a custody arrangement needs to be in a child’s best interest to be approved by a judge. An attorney may help a parent who is seeking custody or other rights to a child gather evidence that granting such a request would meet that threshold.