As experienced child support lawyers near Cumming know, child custody is a complex area of family law. Even in an amicable, no-fault divorce, it is important to speak to a divorce attorney. Only a divorce lawyer who has experience navigating child custody issues can make sure that the best interests of the child are respected by the family court. As you meet with different law firms, make sure to pick an experienced attorney with whom you feel comfortable. Continue reading to learn more about what to do before, during, and after child custody proceedings.
What Can I Do Before a Child Custody Hearing?
The first thing you should do before your child custody hearing is to meet with your family lawyers. As your divorce attorney will explain, you will often times be required to create a parenting plan before your child custody hearing. This plan outlines where the child will spend his or her time each day of the year, including holidays. Your child custody plan should be as specific as possible. It can be as detailed as to even specify each parent’s obligations to transport the child when switching parenting time.
What Happens at Family Court?
At your child custody hearing, you, your divorce attorney, your spouse, his or her family lawyers, and the judge will all be present. The judge will consider any evidence that either party presents, review your child custody plan, and make his or her decision based on the best interests of the child. The judge will weigh many factors in awarding custody, including the child’s health and safety, each parent’s mental and financial well-being, and each parent’s location.
How Can Child Custody Arrangements Be Altered?
The family court can review and modify parent visitation rights. If you want to dispute your child custody arrangement, you should speak to your family attorney. The family court will modify child custody arrangements where there has been a substantial change in circumstances concerning custody. Judges are given wide discretion in determining what amounts to a substantial change in circumstances.