What is a child custody investigator?
A child custody investigator provides valuable services for parents going through child custody disputes. Your family law attorney would likely recommend speaking with a child custody investigator to determine what options you have to help your case. In essence, a child custody investigator benefits you by providing an unbiased observation of your child’s well-being when in the care of the other parent.
How does a child custody investigator help you?
A child custody investigation monitors how your child is being treated by the other parent. A private investigator uses various techniques to secure evidence that may be viewed by a judge to support your allegations. Furthermore, a child custody investigator may interview potential witnesses, such as family members, neighbors and others who have observed your child with the other parent.
Child custody investigations often include background checks on the people in your child’s life. When investigating the other parent, the child custody investigator looks for behaviors such as substance abuse (alcohol and/or drugs), criminal acts, reckless driving, angry/violent outbursts, and any other actions that show your child is endangered or neglected. Once the child custody investigation is complete, the investigator provides a written report and media files for use in legal proceedings. The investigator also provides court testimony if needed.
What are the possible outcomes?
In North Carolina, two types of child custody exist: physical custody and legal custody.
Physical custody, as defined by North Carolina General Statute 48-1-101 (12), refers to “the physical care of and control over an individual.”
In simple terms, physical custody refers to the person with whom the child resides. It is important to note that the court may award physical custody to one parent (sole physical custody) or both parents (joint physical custody). Visitation schedules fall under physical custody.
Legal custody, as defined by North Carolina General Statute 48-1-101 (9), refers to “the general right to exercise continuing care of and control over the individual as authorized by law, with or without a court order, and:
a. Includes the right and the duty to protect, care for, educate, and discipline the individual;
b. Includes the right and the duty to provide the individual with food, shelter, clothing, and medical care; and
c. May include the right to have physical custody of the individual.
As the North Carolina Court of Appeals stated in Diehl v. Diehl (2006), legal custody refers to the “right and responsibility to make decisions with important and long-term implications for a child’s best interest and welfare.” This would encompass decisions such as education, medical care, etc.
As you can see, child custody disputes may render life-altering changes that affect the well-being of your child. Child custody investigations provide you with the ammunition needed to increase your chances of success in court.
Do you need a child custody investigator?
The short answer to this question is an emphatic YES. As a parent, your job is to protect your child. When you reasonably suspect the other parent is unfit, dangerous, or erratic, you must intervene. Abuse and neglect lead to dire consequences. Hire a child custody investigator in North Carolina to get the peace of mind you deserve.
How much does a child custody investigation cost?
This is an important question and one the Aubor Group team is willing to answer openly, unlike many investigative firms. Because every investigation is different due to circumstances specific to the client, the amount of time a case requires varies.
In the end, you decide how much you are willing to spend to protect your child.