Do I need a lawyer?
Although court officials in some counties may tell you that you cannot file without an attorney, you have a right to file for custody or to access the court in any manner without an attorney. However, child custody cases are often very complicated and it may be difficult for you to file a proper petition and to go through the court hearings without the help of a lawyer.
Also, if the other parent has a lawyer, this may make it more difficult for you. To find a lawyer or legal aid program in your area, please visit the AL Finding a Lawyer page. If you are a victim of domestic violence, having an attorney who is knowledgeable about domestic violence and custody matters is very important. For a list of questions to ask an attorney before you hire that attorney, you can read How do I pick the right attorney? What questions do I ask? in our Choosing and Working with a Lawyer section.
If you are going to be in court without a lawyer, our Preparing for Court – By Yourself section may be useful to you.