A Guardian Ad Litem in Idaho is a guardian appointed by the Court to watch after someone during a case for the lawsuit. In certain instances, the judge names a guardian ad litem to work with a child or a person who is incapable of understanding a case involving them. In cases like custody, neglect, or abuse, a guardian ad litem investigates and stands for the best interest in favor of the child.
What Does Guardian Ad Litem in Idaho Do?
As said above, the job of the guardian ad litem is to tell the Court what will be best for the child in scenarios like custody and visitation. They perform an independent investigation and do not work for child protection or court services.
To investigate, they are required to talk to the child, parents, and their caregivers. They perform the inquiry by discussing various subjects with the child’s teachers, family members and friends, court services, and child protection workers.
The Guardian ad litem writes a report to the Court mentioning what they think that the judge should order. The judge has the right not to do what the Guardian says; however, judges take the report made by the guardian ad litem very seriously.
Parents or guardians need to cooperate with the guardian ad litem as their report can help or hurt the case. Here are a few tips that can let you know how to work with your child’s Guardian Ad Litem in Idaho.
Tips for How to Work With Your Child’s Guardian Ad Litem:
It’s best to follow these guidelines when working with a Guardian Ad Litem.
Usually, guardian ad litem has limited time to gather information about the child and family. You can help them by providing facts and information that is relevant to the issues before the Court. Do note that your guardian ad litem is not your lawyer, therapist, social worker, or friend, so do not vent or talk about all the things you dislike about your child’s other parent.
When the judge names the guardian ad litem to conduct research, they conduct an independent investigation and not just rely on what the parents or other people say. They ask several questions, some of them might make the interviewee feel that the guardian ad litem doesn’t like them. However, this is their job, and they are doing their “due diligence” and trying to get the facts straight. Help your guardian ad litem do their job by being honest when they ask you for specific information or documents.
Be Prepared for the Meeting with the Guardian Ad Litem:
When you go for the meeting with your guardian ad litem, make sure that you bring your Court papers, Orders, or any other relevant documents along with you. Also, bring the names and contact information of any professionals, maybe therapists, doctors, or someone else, working with you or your child. Getting names and contact information for friends and family members who are in contact with your child could also be of some help.
If your child any has special medical or educational needs, present information about that as well. In short, plan on how you can give the guardian ad litem a good snapshot about your relationship with your child, your relationship with them, and their life overall.
Respect the Guardian’s Ad Litem Role:
Note that guardian ad litem is the advocate of your child and not the referee in the dispute between you and the other parent. If you feel like there is an important matter affecting your child that you believe the guardian ad litem needs to know about, keep your concerns “child-centered” instead of making them about your needs or feelings. Do not flood them with text messages or emails between addressing issues about you and the other parent.
Do Not Coach Your Child:
Do not tell your child what they should speak and what information they should withhold with the guardian ad litem. They are most likely to interview your child alone if they are old enough. An experienced guardian ad litem has experience and training to spot signs when a child has been taught about taking certain positions concerning the custody situation.
What you can do best here is to let your child know that the Guardian will ask them some questions for their own good and that it is okay to answer those questions honestly. If the guardian ad litem catches that a child has been coached, then the consequences will be negative for the case.
Call Our Boise Family Law Attorneys Today:
If you are also facing a divorce or family law case that includes Guardian Ad Litem in Idaho, feel free to discuss it with our attorneys at Boise Family Law. Let us assist you in your case.