Going to court for a child custody matter can be nerve-wracking. You are probably worried about the outcome and might be very anxious. There are several things you can do when you are working to prepare for these hearings. These can help you ensure that you are putting your best foot forward from the start of the case.
One of the best things that you can do before a hearing is to find out what the laws state. You need to know how to apply these to your case so that you don't have unrealistic expectations about what is going to happen. Your stress level might decrease when you find out this information.
Another important step is gathering whatever documentation you might need for the hearing. This might be proof that you've paid child support or a copy of the child's school records. It is usually better to have documents you don't need than to not have ones that the court requests.
Find out what specific rules and etiquette points are important in the courtroom. Each judge will have specific things that are discouraged or encouraged. For example, some judges won't allow athletic wear or hats in their courtroom. Knowing this ahead of time ensures that you don't break any of the judge's rules.
Finally, have an idea of the resolution you'd like to see. Some family court judges will discuss this with you and your ex prior to making a ruling. By knowing ahead of time what you want and what you're willing to fight for, you might be able to better inform the court of these points if and when the time comes.