When One Party in a Child Custody Battle LIES in Court

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In a custody battle it doesn’t really matter if what is being said about you is true or not; what matters is whether the court believes it’s true.*

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*This video recording is for educational purposes only and should not be considered as the rendering of legal advice. The viewing of this recording does not create an attorney-client relationship. An attorney-client relationship is only formed when you have signed an engagement agreement. We cannot guarantee results. Past results do not guarantee future results. Consult with a licensed attorney for information regarding the specifics of your case.

In these type of cases it really boils down to what person is saying vs. what the other person is saying during the custody hearing and who the judge or jury is going to believe. In every family law case that goes to trial credibility of that witness is the issue. Credibility means how reliable is each witness & there are a lot of things that the judge can look at when deciding whether or not to believe a witness.

1. The person’s manner when testifying meaning are they acting nervous, are they pausing a lot before answering certain questions? Do they start crying or are they sweating…These things can be considered when deciding on the believability of the witness.

2. Non-verbal communication, whether or not they get hostile when the other attorney or party is cross examining them, there ability to recall events or details or dates or how specific their testimony is when it relates to important events.

In any family law case, it is also very important to practice your testimony and your witnesses testimony before you set foot in the court room. I always sit my client’s down and we go through a role-laying exercise, sometimes 2, 3 or even 4 times before we go into the courtroom, especially if my client is having some anxiety about testifying and most of them are because it’s a stressful and not a natural situation when you go into the court and testify something as personal as your kids, your money, your property, debts, lifestyle, your current relationships so it really does help to practice.

Also, get your witnesses prepared by having them practice their answers that you will be asking them in court. Let them know what you will be looking for in their answers. Also, prepare them to be cross-examined as by the other divorce attorney. This is a big mistake that people make when preparing. They fail to get themselves their witnesses prepared for cross-examination by the other attorney.

Always be straightforward and forthcoming with the court. In some states or jurisdictions the judge can actually ask questions to you or your witnesses and also the jury can write questions they want answered. If the other party proves that you haven’t given information it can come back and bite you.

Here is an example of that happening in an actual divorce case.

I got a court decision from a trial for a client and one of the issues were the income of the parents and in Arizona there are some situations where employment bonuses can be counted as income and my client and I wanted to count the husband’s employment bonuses as income and they were significant bonuses around ,000 one year and ,000 the next. After we had presented the evidence and asked the husband over the last 5 years how many bonuses did he receive and the amount and his answer to the judge was that he had received bonuses in 2 of the 5 years. What the husband did not tell the judge however is that he had been working for his current company which is Microsoft for only 3 years so 2 out of the 3 years he had been working for Microsoft he received bonuses.

So in the judges decision she referred to that failure to reveal information and she said and i quote.

“Father worked for Microsoft, he received bonuses 2 of the last 3 years he has worked there. In 2015 he received ,000 and in 2014 he received ,000 for an average of ,000. When asked by the court how often he received bonuses father failed to reveal to the court that he had only worked there 3 years leaving the impression that he did not receive bonuses frequently. Persuant to Arizona law bonuses may be included in gross income, the court finds it reasonable to include the average of father’s last 2 years bonuses in the salary.

Wendy Hernandez is a family law attorney in Phoenix, AZ and founder of Command the Courtroom which teaches you how to handle yourself in court and achieve the best outcome when representing yourself in your divorce or child custody case.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/commandthecourtroom
Web: http://www.commandthecourtroom.com
My Law Firm: http://www.hernandezfirm.com
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20 thoughts on “When One Party in a Child Custody Battle LIES in Court”

  1. What if he lied in previous testimony at the divorce and custody trail? Jurisdiction is now in another state and his previous can be proven to be lies. Blatant violation of the laws . Just curious.

  2. This did not happen in my case the liar got custody because my kid is 17 and 1/2 and got to say who she wanted to live with even though he drives home drunk with her in the car lies about child support for the past 8 years or more

  3. My cousin is having custody battle of his 5 yr old child, in TX. The mother never took care of the child since his birth, nor took him for outings. My cousin, The father, took care of the child or his mother-in law. The mother was cheating throughout their 10 yr marriage and had drug/alcohol problems. She's a reckless driver with three car accidents. In the last accident child was in the car, car was totally crushed but luckily no one was injured. That day she was not even allowed by court to take the child outside. She has also attempted or acted suicide. She has hired most expensive attorneys through her rich aunt. She has lied over and over in the court and denied all alligations. The dilemma is there is no proof of her cheating, or addiction or lying because she has deleted all evidence and she is manuipulative. So what can my cousin do to get soul custody of the child since she is an incompetent mother.? How to prove it to the judge.?

  4. PLEASE help me! It is URGENT. Please. I've called domestic violence Hotlines. Called the police. Etc. The person on the other side's family has money and I cannot find a pro bono attorney anywhere. Court is tomorrow and we have no one. We're up against a dangerous person who has all of the resources they need and we're going to be pulverized, and a premature baby could be sent off with this monster. We don't even know how to file a continuation. PLEASE I am BEGGING you. I need help finding emergency resources.
    If it's possible to speak with you please let me know and I will email you.
    Thank you for your time.

  5. Honesty with your self and your abilities to care for the child(s) is extremely important. Learn to express yourself to the Court in a way that is not a personal attack on the other parent instead use exhibit(s) and state fact(s) of your abilities to respond to your child's needs. Try to have a lawyer for a least limited representation work they can help you get certain documents, help you sopena people, provide helpful statues and put together exhibit books.

  6. I don't understand how more child support would benefit your client? I thought child support was for the child not the mother..

  7. What happens when someone petitions to modify custody based on lies that we have concrete evidence regarding? IE claims that a parent has been late, that the child academically suffers when with said parent, that the parent refuses to be involved in medical visits, etc… Can we get this dismissed before it even goes to trial?

  8. Hi I live in Florida an have been in an out of family court for 6 years an everytime we have a new judge so keep having to prove my ex is a dangerous habitual liar. We have two boys with autism an she has NO LOVE or bond with them. Now she temporarily has time sharing an has kept them with live in babysitters an others watching the kids so she can keep staying with her boyfriend who is court ordered to never go near our children. Ultimatly she is trying to get that removed an the how is by smearing me everywhere, lying constantly an that has already affected her some with most except this new judge. He is definetly ALL FOR HER, I picked up on this during our initial court date an it disgusted me as he acted as if I lied saying I have had full time sharing and custody for years til very recently. He even asked why she didnt put me on child support when she is over four thousand in arrears that she will nt pay an continually lies about in which I could of stayed on it but last time was just happy to prove she was a liar an succeed in getting the boyfriend permeantly restrained from coming near our children again as he is a rapiest an sick individual. She has gotten away with SO MUCH! It literally makes me so sick things are female favored everywhere here in Florida where I live. Our boys school allowed her to come to an IEP meeting when she had a restraining order against her doing so an NOTHING HAPPENED when i proved it with iep documentation, the truceny officer an principal were fired to avoid a lawsuit but NOTHING happened to my ex wife. Even when she lied several times an I exposed every single lie with proof of documentation, witnesses, pictures an more. All our therapists an teachersn family an friends an neighbors wrote letters to the Judge an I had our case won last time as she had tried to commit suicide an got baker acted by her boyfriend an on the Very last day of court we had a new Judge!! The guardian ad litem stood upto this man an demanded he review evidence but this man threw out everything except the permeant restraining order an he even made it where my ex no longer had to pay child support even though she was to pay all arrears. I need some help, guidancen advice. Never have I been so aggrivated an disappointed in a human being an her lies are deadly. She was caught red handed trying to set me up once by sheriffs office when she came to pick up the boys when o was buckling in our oldest son she grabbed my cell phone an ran away from her car an the boys, she stopped tried to break it an then ran back to her car, i picked it up an dialed 911 so they heard ALL THAT FOLLOWED, she ran to her drivers seat an began Screaming an acting as if I were hitting an assaulting her, I couldnt believe what I was seeing, she reached under her drivers seat an grabbed her cell phone an kept screaming an started to slowly back up in her car to drive away, as she finally got away I put the phone to my ear praying they were there an the woman still was! She sent an officer an her showed up shortly afterwards an called her from my driveway an he asked if she was just at my house an she lied! He demanded she come right back an all she said was she wouldnt talk anymore without her lawyer! She had no lawyer but hung up on the cop. He pressed charges but the state dropped the case!! It wasnt the first time they did son with several battery charges where my neighbors called when they saw her hit me with my own tahoe, an camaro, an other times as well. She is a master manipulator, an narcissist, habitually lies an always seems to get away with murder! I have been protecting an raising the boys by myself for years but in court orders we have 50-50 unfortunatly an she gets the boys disabiloty checks, thats all she wanted to begin with. But the smearing has reached peak status now an I am beyond disgusted but also hurt by being away from my boys for even a single day but she made it seem like I was some nut ball so I cannot even see my boys, granted she asked for supervised visits during court an this is how I know this judge is white knight pig, an he also has public charges in the past 2012 for corruption in the town near us thats very public knowledge. Is there anyway to demand this man be fair?! He already denied both of us requesting I have visitation an gave me NONE until court is over! I know this is hurting my boys terribly but nobody is taking their wants an needs into consideration an after almost 10 years I am all they know except rides to school with their mom sometimes an taking them to eat once in awhile. I have no problems proving where we lived for years alone, her text messages prove more than that alone but this judge makes it even more of an uphill! Anyone with knowledge I lack, PLEASE HELP!

  9. I showed proof of my ex lying by facts and documents and he didn't believe me. And he asked my ask questions and took her word for without facts

  10. I would love to have you as an attorney. My husband and I had a cut and dry, quick and easy case. It got drawn out for 2 years, we are still dealing with it. Grandparents rights case where his biological mother is seeking to hold guardianship of our child. The guardian ad litem in this case ruled in our favor and believed his mother should have at least 1 court ordered weekend a month to ensure a bond with our daughter. We were ok with this, and then the judge decided to go against the GAL and tell my husbands mother she would be granted guardianship and would have our daughter on a joint custody term. Of course we are fighting this and are baffled by his response and decision. What do we do? How can we fight this?

  11. I am looking for help with this issue. I now have over 6 years about of proof of my ex wifes deliberate attempts to keep my from seeing my daughter. We had a court order, that she refused to follow, which I have proof in the form on text messages, emails, online communication through our family wizard, and talking parents. The problem is my income has been such, because I lost in court to reimburse costs that were already denied 2 times prior, because I had no paperwork on that date due to my 1 lawyer I had enough money for to hire, refused, and still will not give me copies of my file, which pissed the judge off cuz he thought i was lying I guess, that I can not afford a lawyer now, and it has built up to a massive financial burden to even try to get help from any service or lawyer just to fill out papers. All I need is a pro bono lawyer that will help me fill out the papers as now I am so overwhelmed I am not sure where to start. It is insane the amount of times she refuses to follow the order, I filed contempt charges years ago but did not fill out the paperwork right and her lawyer demur it and it got thrown out. I went through 5 supervisors trying to get her to show when court said I needed to do 10 visits. She refused to even respond to them for over 18 months, in which my old lawyer has proof. I hope anyways. I have evidence she lied on court papers to get a TRO, lied about why she did not come to visits or why people could not supervise anymore, she bribed me at one point to sign away my rights. I have begged pro bono services to help with no one returning calls or not getting back to me I am guessing because it has just become a mountain of issues. I know for a fact though if she loses the contempt, which with all the proof I have I do not see it possible for her to get out of this, I can get lawyer fees, and she makes more then enough money. I am here because I am desperate. Please any help you can give I will take or advice. Thank you.

  12. my ex husband won't follow our court order his wife and has turned my daughters against me what do I do

  13. With our broken Justice system today it’s a flip of a coin are you kidding.
    We have courts overturned 80percent of the time. That’s not a mistake that’s an agenda …

  14. A family member has just been threatened by his wife (of 4 months, but she's decided she's 'over it' – they have a 1 year old together) that she will accuse him of being physically and emotionally abusive if he wants to argue a 'custody agreement' she TEXTED him, in court. (NO reason, just cause,) She generously offered 1 day a week and a weekend once a month, like what? Then sent our Mother a message asking if she could care for the baby 4 days a week, 1 night a week, a weekend here and there and whenever she goes away for work. (We already have her 2 days a week, plus whenever she goes away) And that she wants him in the baby's life because he is an amazing Father. ?????
    She thinks she is getting an annulment, but in Australia we don't have 'voidable' marriages. We are all besides ourselves. We don't want to lose access to the baby, she's amazing, but with the courts the way they are, even all the way over here, it's likely she can say whatever she wants, contradict herself, lie and she'll still get her way.
    Why do people do this? Our world is so sad sometimes. A baby is never just ONE person's. It always takes two. And then the village to raise them.

    Heartbroken 😢😭😔

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