Child Custody and Visitation
CHILD CUSTODY & VISITATION LAWYERS
In Georgia, Superior Court judges have the exclusive authority and broad discretion to decide who gets custody of the children in the event an agreement cannot be reached. This can be a difficult and frustrating, which is why hiring an experienced Augusta GA based divorce attorney like the ones at Fleming, Nelson & Blitch, LLP is important. Our attorneys have years of experience handling the most difficult child custody and visitation cases successfully for our clients.
A judge determines the custodial times for each parent and determines which parent will make the significant decisions for the benefit of the children based on what is in the children’s best interests. Litigating custody issues is a last resort due to the polarizing nature of contested custody cases. Such cases should be negotiated based on sound legal and practical advice, with the goal of attaining a result that is in the children’s best interests
1.) Child Custody: Child custody refers to the legal and practical responsibility for the care and upbringing of a child. It involves making decisions about the child’s education, healthcare, religion, and other important aspects of their life. There are two main types of custody:
Physical Custody: This refers to where the child will physically reside most of the time. The parent with whom the child primarily lives is often referred to as the “custodial parent,” and the other parent is the “non-custodial parent.”
Legal Custody: This involves the authority to make major decisions on behalf of the child, including decisions related to education, healthcare, and religious upbringing. Legal custody can be joint (both parents share decision-making) or sole (one parent has the authority)
The specific arrangements for child custody and visitation depend on factors such as the child’s age, the parents’ ability to cooperate, the child’s needs, and any relevant legal regulations in the jurisdiction. It’s generally advisable for parents to come to an agreement on custody and visitation through negotiation or mediation, but if they cannot reach an agreement, a court will make a determination based on the best interests of the child.
2.) Visitation (Parenting Time): Visitation, also known as parenting time, refers to the schedule and arrangements for the non-custodial parent to spend time with the child. The goal is to maintain a healthy and consistent relationship between the child and both parents, even if they are no longer living together.
Scheduled Visitation: This involves a predetermined schedule for when the non-custodial parent will have access to the child. The schedule can include weekends, holidays, vacations, and other specific periods of time.
Reasonable Visitation: In some cases, parents may have the flexibility to work out visitation arrangements based on their availability and the child’s needs without a strict schedule.
Supervised Visitation: If there are concerns about a parent’s behavior or the child’s safety, a court might order that visits be supervised by a third party, such as a relative or professional supervisor.
Litigation is sometimes unavoidable. When parties cannot achieve a custodial arrangement through mediation or negotiation. We have the experience necessary to represent clients in the most difficult and contentious custody issues, and we have the ability to help guide clients through this emotionally trying process while at all times keeping the needs and best interests of the children at heart and advocating an outcome our client desires.