Chicago Child Custody Attorneys
Custody and Visitation Issues
In Georgia, there are two different types of child custody. Legal custody determines who makes the important decisions on behalf of the child, such as medical and education decisions. Physical custody determines who the child lives with. These two types of custody can be granted to one or both parents. Georgia allows for the non-custodial parent to have “reasonable” visitation, but the court will make this determination based on the family’s unique circumstances.
The Importance of Visitation
If only one parent has physical custody of the child, the child’s parents or the court may develop a visitation plan to allow for visitation between the non-custodial parent and the child. Most courts agree that the child should see their non-custodial parent as regularly as possible, barring any extenuating circumstances. This kind of arrangement allows for consistency in the child’s life and allows the child and non-custodial parent to develop an close, loving relationship.
Developing a comprehensive visitation plan means weighing several different factors, and it may take some time to set up. The age, needs, and wants of the child are some of the main factors the court will consider. The work schedule of the parents, the child’s school and activity schedule, and holidays will also be considered when developing the visitation plan. Finally, the court will consider how well the parents get along. The court will try to have the parents first develop a plan through visitation, but if the parents cannot agree on a visitation plan, then the court will order a formal negotiating process or court appearances.
Sometimes there are circumstances that prevent a non-custodial parent from being along with a child. Georgia courts have a number of reasons they employ when restricting visitation, including reasons that would seriously endanger the child’s physical, mental, or emotional health or impair the child’s wellbeing. Georgia courts uphold the child’s welfare when developing a safe visitation schedule. A court may require supervised visitation, if the child’s welfare may be endangered.
Visitation for Other Relatives
Visitation is not guaranteed for other family members like grandparents, great-grandparents, and siblings. However, these other relatives may be granted visitation time if the non-custodial parent has moved out of the family home, is dead, or is missing. Visitation may be granted for other relatives if it would be best for the child. If you are a grandparent, great-grandparent, or sibling and you want visitation with a child, please consult a Georgia visitation attorney who will be able to represent your best interests in court.
If the custodial parent wishes to move out of state, they must first file a Petition for Removal with the Georgia court. Once this is filed, the non-custodial parent is allowed to oppose the move. The non-custodial parent is allowed to seek legal counsel to prevent the child from being moved out of state. Ultimately, the court will be allowed to either permit or deny the petition, based on the needs of the child.
Your Child’s Best Interests
Custody and divorce proceedings are very emotional and often pit parents against each other. This contention often prevents the parents from agreeing on any visitation arrangement for their child. A Georgia visitation attorney will be able to represent you and your child’s best interests in court and help you negotiate a satisfactory visitation plan for your family. Bushnell & Drye, LLC is focused on serving you and your family. Our legal team has the experience to make sure your needs are represented in court and your rights aren’t infringed upon. To schedule a consultation with a Bushnell & Drye attorney, contact us today.