Arizona residents know that child custody disputes can be extremely stressful to all the parties involved, and unfortunately, can be particularly difficult for children. Deion Sanders, a former NFL player, and his wife Pilar Sanders, are currently in the middle of litigation in a contentious divorce. Child custody is one of the issues that the couple is fighting about in court. A hearing was recently held to determine who would be granted temporary custody of the couples' three children, two boys and one girl, ages 9 to 12.
According to reports, the children have been under a great deal of stress and confusion during the divorce proceedings, as there has not been a strict schedule followed regarding custody and visitation time with each parent. There were also times when they would be split with the daughter residing with the mom while the sons resided with the father.
There are indications that the children have been exposed to a lot of the media coverage regarding the divorce. There are also allegations made of physical abuse of the children from Pilar Sanders, from her sister and also from Deion Sanders, although no ruling has been made with respect to any of these allegations.
After hearing all of the testimony from the parties and other experts, the judge is going to interview the children themselves. The court will do its best to devise a ruling that is in the best interests of the children. It may admonish both parents for allowing the children to be exposed to the media reports. The court may also warn both parents against disparaging one another; especially in front of their children.
Although child custody disputes are highly charged with emotion, divorcing parents
must try to keep their emotions in check for the benefit of their children. Failure to do so can have consequences when the court must make a decision regarding who will retain physical custody and regarding visitation schedules. An experienced family law attorney can help anyone engaged in a child custody dispute obtain the best possible outcome in these complex cases.
Source: Dallasnews.com, "Deion and Pilar Sanders divorce hearing focuses on kids' well-being", Valerie Wigglesworth, Jan. 9, 2013