THE CHOUHAN LAW FIRM, LLC: YOUR ATLANTA CHILD CUSTODY LAWYER
Do you need an Atlanta Child Custody Lawyer? Contact the Chouhan Law Firm, LLC, for information and advice when planning your legal strategy. Call us today!
WHAT DOES AN ATLANTA CHILD CUSTODY ATTORNEY DO?
A child custody dispute is one of the most emotionally charged and complex components of a contentious divorce. When divorcing parents cannot agree on child custody arrangements, tensions peak.
Even after reaching an arrangement, issues can still occur. Occasionally, problems emerge when one parent keeps the child, even if it is not their turn. Sometimes, a parent claims the kids for tax purposes after determining that the other parent will do so.
The legal and physical custody of a child is mostly granted to the parent who is more likely to provide a healthy growth environment with all essential needs. But a child custody case, most of the time, puts both parties and parents in a difficult spot.
The answer to these challenges is never to quit paying child support. Doing so would only harm you in the long run. You should instead contact Atlanta child custody attorneys who can assist you in resolving your situation.
The Atlanta child custody lawyers at The Chouhan Law Firm, LLC have an in-depth knowledge of family law and other laws that apply to child custody cases. We have an understanding of the challenges facing mothers and fathers who are going through custody disputes, and we are here to help you every step of the way.
UNDERSTANDING THE CORE CHILD CUSTODY ISSUES
What Is Custody?
Child custody refers to the scenario in which a parent (or parents, in circumstances of shared legal or physical custody) is responsible for the upbringing and protection of their child.
During acrimonious divorce or separation processes, especially in instances where abuse is claimed to have happened (against the kid, a spouse, or both), custody hearings may be held in court.
What Is Visitation?
Visitation refers to the schedule established (either mutually by the parents or by court order) for the noncustodial parent to visit their kid. In rare situations, the custodial parent or the court may decide that no visitation is permissible, often in cases of abuse.
Visitation may be monitored or unsupervised based on the visitation agreement and timetable, as well as the custodial parent’s relationship with the noncustodial parent. Legally, supervised visitation is rigorously monitored, and any breaches of agreed-upon or required visitation may result in the termination of visitation rights.
HOW DOES CHILD CUSTODY WORK IN ATLANTA, GA?
Custody cases in Atlanta, GA, follow the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJEA). The purpose of the UCCJEA is to eliminate competing orders on child custody disputes in all U.S. states.
Most courts seek a custody arrangement that enables both parents to build and maintain a healthy connection with the children and ensures that children have access to both parents throughout child custody disputes (except for cases where a parent is a danger to the child’s life).
Legal custody and physical custody are the two categories of custody under the laws of Georgia.
Physical custody refers to the child’s residence. If the children reside solely with one parent, that parent has physical custody.
Legal custody refers to who has the authority to make decisions on the children’s medical care, education, religious upbringing, and other topics.
Moreover, there are two types of custody arrangements: sole and joint custody.
In a joint custody arrangement, both parents share physical and legal custody of the kid, but the youngster may spend more time with one parent than the other. Whichever parent the child resides with most of the time has primary custody and is considered the custodial parent. Usually, the custodial parent has more influence over the child’s welfare than the noncustodial parent (whoever they spend a minority of their time with).
In a situation involving sole custody, the child resides with one parent. The other parent (with whom the child does not live) may have visiting rights or legal custody of the child, depending on the circumstances.
Depending on the circumstances surrounding the child custody agreement, visitation may or may not be monitored by a law enforcement professional or child services professional if the court deems such safeguards necessary.
Notably, even though a parent has sole physical custody of their children, they may not have sole legal custody. In some child custody cases, the court may grant a parent sole physical custody and give joint legal custody to both parents.
HOW DO COURTS DETERMINE CHILD CUSTODY IN ATLANTA, GA?
If both parents agree on a child custody agreement, they may collaborate to create a parenting plan outlining how they will manage custody. The custody arrangements become legal if the local Atlanta court approves their parenting plan.
However, the court may need to decide if the parents cannot agree on how to handle custody. In this case, the court accepts each parent’s parenting plans and hears testimony from the parents supporting their parenting plans. The court subsequently renders a final decision and prepares a legally enforceable parenting plan.
In custody cases, the courts make decisions based on the child’s best interests. The courts in Atlanta, Georgia, consider the following elements while deciding custody cases:
The physical and mental health of both parents;
The home surroundings of both parents and the adequacy of those environments for the child
How well each parent can provide the child with essential care (healthcare, education, food, clothes, etc.) and good quality of life.
Whether one or both parents are participating in alternative custody agreements;
How a possible custody arrangement may affect a child’s development (for instance, how changing schools may damage their social skills or education);
How dependable any parent is;
The history of each parent with the child;
Whether one or both parents are unfit owing to reasons such as child abuse or drug misuse
Child custody orders in Atlanta, Georgia, are binding until the child reaches the age of 18. However, if changes in living circumstances necessitate a modification of the custody arrangement, one parent may submit a petition to alter custody.
To modify child custody, they must demonstrate that there have been significant changes in circumstances that will affect the child’s welfare. The court shall consider the important details and check on how children are being provided with the basic necessities of life.
In most cases, the court grants custody to another parent if he or she is no longer able to provide for the kids. In this case, the custody case will undergo a hearing, and court will re-think its decision.
WHEN CAN CHILDREN CHOOSE WHICH PARENT TO LIVE WITH IN ATLANTA, GA?
Courts in Georgia will only consider a child’s wishes in a custody case when the child is 14 years old. Even at that point, the court will not decide solely on the child’s wishes.
Before reaching a decision, the court analyzes numerous variables to determine what custody arrangement is in the child’s best interest.
CAN A FATHER GET FULL CUSTODY IN ATLANTA, GEORGIA?
Yes, a father can get full custody rights. If the parents are married and eligible for custody in Georgia, both the father and mother have equal custody rights.
The courts will not issue custody to the mother just because she is the mother. Instead, the courts will analyze all relevant circumstances and decide on what is in the best interests of the child.
HOW LIKELY IS 50-50 CUSTODY IN ATLANTA, GA?
Some judges in Atlanta, Georgia, are opposed to awarding 50/50 parenting time. This is because of a commonly-held belief that a child benefits from having a single household.
However, if both parents desire equal parenting time, it is often attainable. In fact, there happen been attempts, such as HB 96 in Georgia’s General Assembly, to compel Georgia courts to allow 50-50 custody arrangements.
WHAT QUALIFIES AS AN UNFIT PARENT IN ATLANTA, GA?
Courts in Atlanta, GA, may find a parent “unfit” if they meet the following criteria:
Abandons the child;
Abuses or severely mistreats the child;
Fails to care for the child;
Raise the child in a setting that raises physical custody concerns.
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO HIRE A CHILD CUSTODY LAWYER IN GEORGIA?
Child custody attorneys (or family law attorneys) often charge by the hour. The total legal expenses are influenced by the nature of the issue, the necessity for outside specialists, and the attorney chosen.
LEARN HOW OUR GEORGIA LAW FIRM CAN ASSIST YOUR FAMILY
Our Atlanta attorney and visitation lawyer are well-versed in the critical case laws controlling child custody matters. They also understand the difficulties faced by mothers and fathers during custody disputes.
As an experienced family law attorney, The Chouhan Law Firm, LLC, has assisted families like yours for many years. We help parents think strategically and take the essential precautions to safeguard their family’s future.
If you need lawyers in Atlanta, GA, on your side, contact us now for your consultation.