The fight for child custody can be overwhelming, everyone wants what’s best for the child, but they often disagree about what that means.
Fortunately, our team of Columbus, OH child custody lawyers at Woodford Sathappan McGee have the experience necessary to mediate and ensure that children are protected.
We represent women in child custody cases. We understand what a challenging and emotional situation it can be, and we are committed to supporting you through the legal process and ensuring a positive outcome.
Through our dedication to the needs of women, we have a unique set of skills and experience to offer. We are proud to serve women in Columbus, and with a strong attorney-client relationship, we will help ease the stress and ensure that your child custody rights are protected and that the parenting plan prioritizes the needs of your child.
Contact our local office today at (380)212-3731 and arrange a free consultation about your child custody case today.
Formulating child custody arrangements are never easy. Mothers may feel alienated and unsure of how to make the best case for custody. Woodford Sathappan McGee has years of experience helping women in all family law matters, including child custody, child support, spousal support, and more.
We will give your case the individual care and dedication it deserves, easing your stress and guiding you through the legal process.
We take the time to get to know our clients and listen to their needs and the needs of their children. We provide individualized and supportive representation, being available for both legal counsel and emotional support.
We support our clients throughout their legal custody battle and beyond. If you need to change a child custody order or initiate contempt proceedings against your ex-spouse for violation of the order, our Columbus child custody lawyer can help.
In Ohio, traditional terms such as joint custody and sole custody have been removed. Instead, courts will allocate parental rights and responsibilities for the children’s care. Each parent will be assigned a parenting time schedule and visitation rights as part of the Ohio custody order.
Either one or both parents could be awarded decision-making rights over the child. The parent with decision-making rights (referred to as sole legal custody in other states) can make medical, religious, educational, and legal decisions in regards to the child.
When it comes to parenting time, it can be split equally, or one parent may spend the majority of the time with the child. Whoever the child lives with most of the time is called the residential parent. The other parent is the noncustodial parent.
Even if one party has sole parental rights, both parents are entitled to visitation rights. In Ohio, each parent is entitled to at least minimum visitation unless the child’s welfare is at risk
Examples include where one parent has a history of substance or alcohol abuse or domestic violence. However, even in these cases, visitation probably won’t be cut off visitation completely. Instead, they may be awarded supervised visits.
A typical visitation schedule might look like one weeknight and visits every other weekend. A court may award more visitation, but not less than the minimum amount in accordance with legal guidelines.
In addition, neither parent should prevent visits. When one parent does this, they can face contempt of court charges. Or in extreme cases, they could have their custody rights lessened or taken away completely.
At Woodford Sathappan McGee, our Columbus divorce lawyers are highly skilled in mediation. Child custody determined through mediation, as opposed to litigation, can have many benefits, including:
Saves money on legal fees.
Allows couples to arrive at personalized arrangements.
Protects children from court proceedings.
Your child custody attorney can help guide you through mediation sessions and help you to form a parenting plan, which will then be submitted to the court for approval.
We will also be prepared to represent you in court if an amicable agreement cannot be reached. Woodford Sathappan McGee can help you negotiate as much of your divorce as possible before moving to litigation to ask the court to rule on any lingering issues.
The Ohio courts overseeing family law cases are required to make decisions based on the child’s best interests. They will usually prefer it if the child’s home remains the same and that they are protected as much as possible from the separation proceedings. The family court judge may take into consideration factors such as:
Minimizing disruption to the child’s life, where they are accustomed to living and going to school.
The child’s wishes, especially for older children.
The child’s interaction with and proximity to other family and friends.
How involved each parent has been with the child’s care in the past, such as taking them to doctor’s appointments, attending school events, etc.
The mental and physical health of both parents.
Each parents willingness to accommodate visits between the child and the other parent
Potential danger to the child from either parent, such as if one parent has pled guilty to domestic violence or child abuse or has a history of substance misuse.
The ability of the child’s parents to meet their emotional and physical needs.
The child custody arrangement will significantly affect child support. In accordance with Ohio family law, both parents must financially contribute to raising their children. If the child’s physical custody lies mainly with one parent, the other parent will likely have to pay child support.
Life is unpredictable, and sometimes unexpected events occur, which makes your current parenting arrangement unmanageable. A court order cannot easily be changed, but at Woodford Sathappan McGee, we have the experience and skills necessary to help.
The Ohio family court will consider changes to your child custody order with a motion. We can help you put together your motion for modification and submit it to the court. If the judge determines the change is in the children’s best interest, they should accept it.
If the other parent has repeatedly failed to meet their obligations, then this may also be grounds to change the order. You may also have grounds for contempt proceedings, especially if they have failed to pay child support.
Woodford Sathappan McGee will provide the legal counsel you need and do everything possible to streamline the experience.
The cost of custody attorneys in Columbus, Ohio, is dependent on the details of your individual case. At Woodford Sathappan McGee, we can give you an idea of how much your case will cost in a free consultation, so you can make an informed decision. We want what’s best for our clients, which means keeping costs down as much as possible with mediation and negotiation.
Usually, each person is responsible for paying their own legal fees. However, if one parent is significantly more financially stable than the other, then the judge may order fees to be compensated by the other party.
In Ohio, instead of joint legal custody or sole physical custody, parenting plans are designed to allocate parental rights and responsibilities. These must be in the child’s best interests.
Woodford Sathappan McGee is the only law firm to exclusively represent women in Ohio. This gives us a unique set of skills and expertise that allows us to provide unparalleled support.
Our Columbus child custody lawyers have the skills, resources, experience, and drive to secure the best possible outcome in your child custody case, no matter its complexity.
Contact us today at (380)212-3731 to schedule a free consultation.