Win Your Child Custody War

Everything you could ever think of!

Michele Hernandez, Teacher

I was amazed at first that this book was written by a non-professional, but after reading it, I can see that the author went through much of this stuff personally and learned a great deal. Lawyers only tell you so much, but this book examines the issues from various sides. It is VERY comprehensive. You can read it cover to cover (it's very absorbing) or use the excellent indices to find almost any topic you need to know. Some of the material (like the detective reports) is fascinating. There is a ton of helpful advice. The only problem with the book is that it's SO big that it can seem overwhelming until you realize that you don't have to read everything, just what's relevant. I like the fact that the author emphasizes that you should do everything NOT to fight in order to protect your kids. Many feel a custody battle is about who wins and who loses, but the biggest losers tend to be the children.

The Only Child Custody Resource Book You'll Ever Need!

Sandra McLeod Humphrey Children's Author Minnetonka, MN

Sandra McLeod Humphrey, reviews Win Your Child Custody War

Child Custody Help Source Book--A How-To System for People Serious About the Welfare of Their Child

This book is impressive in both its depth and its breadth. It is a practical "how-to" book, but it is extremely well-researched and covers every imaginable custodial issue. No one involved in a custodial battle should enter the courtroom without first reading it. With this book everybody wins -- mothers, fathers, and especially the children. Highly Recommended!

Cautionary Directions for World War III-Type Combat

Donald Mitchell "a Practical Optimist " Reviewer of 3,441 Books, Willing to devote all of your attention to winning, and want to know as much as possible about how to decide what to do, Win Your Child Custody War is the right book for you.

If you think that using the courts to get a better custody deal is an easy, simple, inexpensive path, this is also the right book for you. It will hopefully present you with the reality of what you will go through and encourage you to seek a simpler solution.

Child custody battles are usually about the emotions of the adults, and reflect the child's interest as an excuse to "punish" the other adult. In chapter 13, there's some helpful material about how to minimize the negative impact on children during divorces and changing custody relationships.

Most women going through a divorce or separation hit some situation that scares them almost to death (such as you go to pick up your child, and find an empty house with all the furniture removed). These issues are dealt with very well in chapter 15.

Chapter 16 does a fine job with how to deal with various kinds of child abuse, false allegations of child abuse, and actual cases of kidnapping.

The author has been through much of this, so you're dealing with someone who knows the ropes. However, remember that this is a resource guide. The chances are very good that you will never come up against 95 percent of what is described here. Also, you don't really have to know the roles of the various courts (up to the Supreme Court) as they are outlined here.

Ms. Hardwick consistently encourages you to settle peaceably and quickly, whenever possible. That's good advice. This book would have been a lot more valuable, however, if it had dealt with custody issues from the perspective of what most people will go through rather than the relative few who will face drug-dealing, fly-by-night, ex-cons during the custody battle. If your former spouse or lover is a person of good character and has moral habits, you will eventually settle this issue by having the two of you sit down without any lawyers around and calmly talk it over. Many people don't want to do that, and create lots of problems for their children while wasting tens of thousands of dollars in the process that are badly needed for some other purpose.

Although this book will teach you how to run a very effective child custody law suit, my advice is to avoid doing that if at all possible.

Think of the children's interests first, second, and third . . . even when you are looking out for their interests!"

Best Custody Book on the Market, Period.

SPARC - Separated Parenting Access & Resource Center

Win Your Child Custody War book is the best, most comprehensive book on the market. I'm a reviewer for SPARC, a divorce and custody web site ( and we recommend the Win Your Child Custody War book before all the others. There's no secret to why we recommend this book so strongly- it's just the best guide to custody issues available anywhere at any price.

The breadth and depth of the information is astounding, well-written, and logically arranged. This book is worth 10 times the cover price, and I don't say that lightly.

There is nothing like the Win Your Child Custody War book; nothing even comes close. This is, in our opinion, The book to have. You'd have to buy about 20 other books just to start to equal the information contained in this one.

(And just in case you're wondering, we have no connection to Pale Horse Publishing, we just think their books stand head-and-shoulders above the rest.)


Patricia Kay "author and avid reader," Houston, TX

Pat Kay's review, Win Your Child Custody War

This book is essential to anyone who is or may be involved in a child custody battle. Every possible problem is covered, giving examples, recommendations, advice, and solutions. There's so much information, it's almost overwhelming.

Then again, being involved in a child custody dispute is no simple matter, so you need lots of information. Better to have too much than not enough. One man who bought the book said it contained details he never would have thought of, but because it did, he was better prepared and won his case.

WIN YOUR CHILD CUSTODY WAR has been recommended by parents, psychologists, mediators, educators, employers, judges, lawyers, and wardens -- all of whom have firsthand knowledge of what's involved when people are fighting one another for custody of a child. Universally, they say that it's the most comprehensive book available today, with a breadth and depth of material not found anywhere else. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.

I Used This Book To Win!

Jay Faber LeMars, ID

Jay Faber's review, Win Your Child Custody War

I am a custodial father who endured a prolonged campaign. Horrible legal advice and strong gender bias plagued my initial effort in 1993. I made many of the mistakes common to parents in these situations and paid dearly.

Later, as our case progressed, I was fortunate enough to discover the manual entitled Win Your Child Custody War . These pearls of wisdom are a treasure trove of the information, advice, and warnings that everyone engaged in this war needs. I only wish I had found this gem when the battle began! The result of this discovery was winning custody of our then 10-year-old son.

This resource is bulging with common sense strategy. From the preferable negotiated settlement to the Desert Storm attack, a wealth of useful tips is readily available for you to implement immediately. In the appendices are your sources for an abundance of intelligence, including a tutorial on how to read legal documents. I even offer it on my website,, where I provide information to other parents involved in US and international child custody disputes. This brilliant work definitely made all the difference in my case and it can in yours as well!

It Is A War!

Barbara Donahue' review, Win Your Child Custody War

Barbara Donahue Author, "The Anti-Rules, Now That You've Got Him, How Do You Get Rid Of Him?"

Win Your Child Custody War: Child Custody Help Source Book

A fantastic book with hard hitting and realistic approaches to the most difficult "war" you could ever imagine.

Don't let anyone tell you it's not a war, because it is, and it is the only one that will ever matter to you.

Great Book!

By Grace E. Castle, Editor, "Cluesonline"

If you've never been involved in a child custody case, you may be offended by the cover of this book. If you have been, the baby boy in a U.S. Marine uniform won't seem unusual at all. The children in this nation that so prides itself on "freedom" are daily battered, psychologically abused, and sometimes killed, while their parents struggle to gain custody -- to win the war. All too often the rights of the children to emotional, physical and psychological stability -- not to mention LOVE -- are overlooked, forgotten, or just plain ignored as each side positions themselves to win custody.

Whether you are a parent, grandparent, older sibling -- or a retained investigator -- you'll find useful guidance in this book. It contains so much information that some chapters are almost overkill. Let me say right up front-if you're engaged in a child custody battle, or you suspect you might be soon, GET THIS BOOK!

I'll be honest -- although I have never before written a book review without having read the entire book, this time I'm making an exception. I don't have the time to devote to reading the massive amount of information, nor do I need to at this moment. However, I have read enough of it to wish I had had a copy in earlier years. If I was working a child custody case now -- I would read every word and insist that everyone involved in the case do the same, if they were capable. Some clients aren't capable, of course, and that makes it even more important that the attorney and investigator be educated.

Though this book is designed primarily for the parents involved in a custody battle, there is ample information for a seasoned investigator to review or a novice to carefully study. There are pages describing email evidence, chain of evidence requirements and applicable case law, and spoliation of evidence details. Especially important are the detailed explanations of why the person seeking custody should NOT be the one gathering evidence. The following is a brief example of what the author has stated:

"Even if you do manage to observe a problem and even if you do manage to conduct an immediate, proper and thorough scene investigation -- including preserving the scene, taking dozens of overall and close-up photographs, making a detailed sketch, casting, collecting, vacuuming, scraping, marking and preserving, it won't do you the least bit of good.

"Why? Because you are an advocate...."

There is an entire chapter entitled, "Detectives" which of course turns out to be about professional investigators. The author interchanges "detective" and "private investigator" and "investigator" so often it becomes confusing. Though PIs are called detectives in some states, the author should choose one descriptor to avoid confusion.

I read this chapter very carefully. Some of the author's advice is right on and useful. Some of it made me grit my teeth! She instructs to "make sure your detective is licensed and, above all, very street smart," but then on another page gives the unwise advice: "Pay the investigator directly, as some attorneys add a mark-up to defray the cost of paying the detective while still waiting for payment from you. Also, tell the investigator that you intend to maintain control over the costs and information developed." I assumed from those comments that Ms. Hardwick didn't know that most states don't extend attorney-client privilege to investigators who are hired directly by the client. Then, several pages further I found her somewhat confusing admonitions. From the initial statement under "Confidentiality-Detective":

"The relationship between a detective and a client is confidential between you and a reputable detective, but there is no confidentiality protected by the law."


"Instruct the detective to send everything directly to you and not maintain an in-house file on your case"

I found her instructions and comments to be completely outside the norm for how a custody investigation should be handled. It is my hope that she seeks assistance in cleaning up the "detective chapter" before the next edition is published.

It also bothers me that she used "he" and "him" throughout the chapter, but since it is consistent with the rest of the book, I'll assume that she is aware that some of the best domestic case investigators are female.

This chapter is heavy on how to govern your investigator, complete with sample forms for evaluating, retaining, and making assignments to him, as well as pages and pages of sample reports. I didn't find anything related to doing this through an attorney, but of course she isn't recommending hiring an investigator through the attorney -- only getting a referral from one. It is good, though, that she warns against hiring "snakes," explaining that unethical investigators aren't willing to break the law "because they think you are such a wonderful person with a worthwhile mission that they will do these things only this time to help you; it is because they are this way all the time."

I was happy to see that Hardwick instructs her readers to "Pay your investigator's fees on time"! To her credit she also provides explicit information on the importance of not having sex with your detective -- no matter who tries to initiate it. There is also information on where to file a complaint against an investigator who has treated the client unfairly.

In a section entitled, "Are You Are Being Watched?" the author uses the great example of the 2003 Texas case of Clara Harris deliberately running down her philandering husband to prove a point that "Just as their (other side) detective can't catch you misbehaving if you are behaving correctly; your own detective can't hide evidence of you behaving badly." In the Harris case, Blue Moon Investigations had to turn over a videotape of their client repeatedly running over her mate. In her publicity materials the author states, "Everyone tells you what you can't do. This manual gives hundreds of options to let you see what you can do." I agree!

An Incredible Resource -- Very Highly Recommended!

Top 50 Amazon Reviewer,, Greenville, SC

Choosing to give my ex-husband custody of our very young children was one of the most difficult decisions I have ever made. Later battles for visitation rights and custody have been the most painful events of my life. I have endured restraining orders based on lies, long distance visitation, and the psychological devastation of being separated from my children. My case went to the worst of extremes when my lawyer resigned my case in order to testify on my behalf in court. Because of the injustice of the handling of the restraining order, my case was used as the example that changed a school's non-custodial parent pickup policy. Along the way, I made many of the mistakes common to parents in my situation and learned many lessons the hard way. I wish I had WIN YOUR CHILD CUSTODY WAR when I began those battles; the information, advice and warnings would have made the battle far easier.

WIN YOUR CHILD CUSTODY WAR provides the legal details and information an informed parent needs before and after hiring a lawyer, detective, or even a psychologist. WIN YOUR CHILD CUSTODY WAR sets realistic expectations, includes straight talk with no mollycoddling, and lots of sound advice. Logs, affidavits, and home studies are covered with meticulous detail and with sound examples. As the author cautions, however, readers also need to follow the advice of their lawyer over the book. For example, in the extreme case of a parent who does not want to visit the child and would stop harassment if not required to pay child support, the author suggests: "You could get counseling, legal assistance or return the money the court sends you each month from the other parent." I know from personal experience that you could return the parent's money in the state of AR. In the state of GA, the money isn't yours, it belongs to your children, and you are required by law to accept the money, just as the non-custodial parent is required by law to pay. No exceptions.

Encouragement and common sense are also included in the WIN YOUR CHILD CUSTODY WAR. Some battles are better walked away from, especially when the battle becomes a matter of winning and not necessarily in the child's Best Interests. WIN YOUR CHILD CUSTODY WAR forces readers to carefully examine their own motives, behaviors and attitudes. It also warns of the pitfalls many parents fall into, and provides tips for how to avoid them. As I turned the pages, revisiting my own battles, challenges and mistakes, I couldn't help thinking of the emotional pain this book could have saved me. Simple things like plan an activity for when you return the children to their custodial parent would have been useful advice from the beginning of my battle. In addition, WIN YOUR CHILD CUSTODY WAR is very sensitive to the issues non-custodial mothers face, especially considering the harsh judgment society places on women without custody.

This is the most personal review I have ever written, but given the nature of the book, I feel compelled to offer personal confirmation of the value of WIN YOUR CHILD CUSTODY WAR. Surprisingly, I also found a lot of self-forgiveness as I read this book. As I revisited old wounds and previously second-guessed decisions, I found confirmation of my own good decision-making, giving the book a remarkably positive spin for this battle weary, but successful warrior. Very highly recommended.

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