Do I have any chance of getting full custody if I can't afford an attorney?

Asked 11 months ago - Metairie, LA

I've been in an abusive relationship. The police were involved several times. My babys father has been charged with domestic violence by stangulation, assault, marijuana charge and violation of a restraining order. We have a 4 month old daughter. The restraining order doesn't end until September 2014. On August 1 of 2013 he cut his self because the baby and I were moving out . The police were involved, he lied and said I cut him. I was charged with domestic abuse and child endangerment. He filed for temporary custody. His name is not on the birth cerfiticate and the baby has my last name. My question is, Do I have any chance of getting full custody? He is a danger to my daughter and I . He has an attorney , I don't. I have a full time job, and stable home to live in.. He is not working.

Attorney answers (2)

  1. Craig Bernard Mitchell

    Contributor Level 14


    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . The facts may ultimately support you gaining sole custody, but your chances diminish greatly if he has an attorney and you do not. The fact that you were also charged with domestic abuse and child endangerment are going to cause you problems - I hope you hired a criminal lawyer to defend you because if found guilty not only will you have to deal whatever sentence is handed down, but it will weigh heavily against you in the custody case.

    When it comes to representing yourself the judge will give you some leeway when it comes to legal procedure and evidence, but you'll still have to comply fully with the law when it comes to putting on your case. I have to say, then, representing yourself with charges against you when your baby's father has an attorney would be like taking a knife to a gun fight. Also, the fact that he is not working but has hired an attorney while you work full time and have not is confusing - in light of what you're dealing with I hope you can find the resources to hire an attorney.

    This response is not intended to create an attorney client relationship and is based on the limited information... more
  2. Veleka Eskinde

    Contributor Level 11

    Answered . I agree with attorney Mitchell. But if resources are your only issue, try the local legal aid office. You will have to pay something though, especially related to the criminal charges.

    <> Information provided in this response is intended to be informational or educational only. It in... more

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