Gwinnett County Child Custody Attorneys
Protecting the Interests of Families in Walton & Clarke Counties
Child custody is among the most disputed issues in divorce negotiations. Unfortunately, children can become bargaining chips in contentious divorce disputes. It is essential for parents to convey the message to their children that both parents love them. In Georgia, courts award custody based on the best interests of the children. If you are involved in a custody dispute, call Crawford and Boyle, LLC, for help from experienced child custody lawyers in Gwinnett County. Based in Monroe, our firm also represents clients throughout Walton and Clarke Counties.
If you need help with a custody dispute, call (678) 726-5400 or contact us online to arrange a consultation.
Types of Child Custody
There are two basic types of custody in Georgia: legal custody and physical custody.
- Legal custody involves making major decisions regarding education, healthcare, religious upbringing, and other matters.
- Physical custody describes where the children will live. When one parent is awarded physical custody, the other is given visitation unless there is a clear reason that this is not in the child’s best interests.
The various types of custody that can be awarded include:
- Sole physical custody
- Joint physical custody
- Sole legal custody
- Joint legal custody
Although joint physical custody with both parents sharing equal time with the children is possible, it is rare. In Georgia, this is usually only awarded when both parties agree to it, have an amicable relationship, and live close to each other.
How is Child Custody Determined in Georgia?
When parents are unable to agree about child custody, the court will make the determination based on what it believes to be in the best interests of the child. Some of the factors the judge will take into consideration are:
- The wishes of each parent
- The wishes of the child
- Child’s relationship with each parent
- Child’s age and needs
- Mental & physical health
- If there is any history of domestic violence
- If there is any history of abuse or negligence with the child
- If there is any history of drug/alcohol abuse
- Availability of child care services
Our child custody attorneys in Gwinnett County provide skilled legal representation to protect your rights and your child’s best interests.
Modification of Child Custody
After the court has determined physical custody of the child, the other parent can petition for a change. In order to request a modification, there must be a substantial change in circumstances. These might include when a custodial parent is arrested, abuses drugs or alcohol, or moves in with another person. A petition can be filed and the court will consider whether the change in circumstances should alter the previous decision. If you need a modification, contact our firm to get the advice of an experienced family law attorney.
Our firm collects a nominal fee for divorce and child custody consultations. Please contact our law firm at (678) 726-5400 to discuss your situation and get the legal advice you need.
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