Can witnesses from other states testify in my custody case?

On Behalf of | Jun 18, 2022 | Child Custody

If your ex has custody of your child in another state, you may have to deal with additional hurdles in your custody case. Fortunately, the Massachusetts Child Custody Jurisdiction Act provides options for state residents to pursue custody across state lines. One aspect of the law addresses how to have out-of-state witnesses assist you.

There are different kinds of evidence you may present in court to support your arguments in your custody case, which include the testimony of witnesses.

The importance of witnesses

If your child has spent a lot of time outside of Massachusetts, your son or daughter may have developed friendships with people in other states. Your child probably has out-of-state teachers and doctors. The relationships of these individuals to your child could be important if they can offer testimony that helps your case.

Expert witnesses can also offer testimony on topics that may be crucial in your case, such as the medical needs of your child. However, one or more of the expert witnesses you want to testify for you might reside in another state.

Acquiring witness testimony

According to state law, you have the right as a party to the custody proceeding to present witness testimony even if the witnesses live in other states. One option is for your out-of-state witnesses to travel personally to Massachusetts to appear in court.

In the event your witnesses cannot make the journey, a court can allow witnesses to testify in other states. Courts have latitude to determine how witnesses can conduct testimony outside of Massachusetts. Your witness may give testimony orally or present it in written form.

It is important to comply with all court requirements and requests when gathering witness testimony. Anything your witnesses say could make the difference in securing a favorable outcome in your custody case.