Very few fathers obtain physical custody of their children. Some suggest that the family law courts are biased against men; others point out that fathers are rarely the primary caregiver for their children, and so don’t get custody. Either way, as a father, you need to understand the types of child custody and hire an Atlanta child custody lawyer to guide you through this troubled time.
When assigning physical custody, the courts typically look at the best interests of the child. Because continuity is important to children, they tend to assign the primary physical custody of the child to the primary caregiver: that is, the person who puts them to bed at night, takes them to the doctor, plans their activities, etc. In most families, this is the mother, which is why fathers rarely get physical custody of the child. However, if the primary caregiver is an unfit parent—abusive, neglectful, alcoholic, drug-addicted, etc.—the courts may assign the physical custody to the other parent. While some parents have joint physical custody, this is often stressful on the children.
Regardless of the physical custody arrangements, in most Atlanta divorce cases , the courts give the parents joint legal custody. This means that neither parent can make major decisions about the child, such as health care, education, religion or residence, without the other parent’s consent. In this way, even if the father doesn’t get physical custody, he can still get input into his child’s life.
If a parent does not get physical custody, usually visitation rights are allowed. This means that the child spends some time with the non-custodial parent. If one parent has a history of abuse or substance abuse, visitation may be supervised. If you have visitation rights, do not miss a visit; it is very hard on children to have a parent miss or even be late to their visits. If you have custody and the other parent regularly misses visitation, document each missed visit and talk to an Atlanta divorce attorney. Make sure to get the terms of visitation in writing to prevent future conflict when people or circumstances change in the future.
If you are engaged in a child custody battle, do not delay: hire an lawyer who has experience in helping men obtain child custody. Without a talented Atlanta divorce lawyer, you may have a custody arrangement that not only isn’t in your best interest but isn’t in the best interest of the child. If you are the fitter parent, you have to prove it, and a skilled Atlanta divorce lawyer can help.
Atlanta criminal attorney Andrew B. Margolis and the Margolis Legal Group have handled literally thousands of cases over the past ten years, from North Georgia to Savannah. His formidable knowledge of the law and good reputation with prosecutors as an attorney who provides the highest level of representation make him an experienced, aggressive, knowledgeable lawyer ready to do battle to protect your rights. Contact the Margolis Legal Group at (404) 355-1400 (phone) or (404) 352-5636 (fax) or at www.margolislegalgroup.com.