Child Custody and Visitation Attorney IN AUGUSTA
Smith & Smith Attorneys at Law
In making the decision about custody, the Court looks to the "best interests of the child/children". Unfortunately, custody is a highly emotional and contested issue. The court looks to many factors in making their decision and may use the assistance of professionals and a court appointed guardian ad litem. The Court looks to such factors as suitability of each parent, the psychological, emotional and developmental needs of the child, the ability of the parents to communicate with each other, the prior and continuing care the parents have given the child, parental support for the other parent's relationship with the child, the wishes of the child, the safety of the child, the geographic proximity of the parents, any custodial agreements of the parents and any history of abuse or neglect by either parent toward the child or toward each other.
At the age of fourteen(14), a child has the right to have input in the choice of which parent will have primary custody; however, the Court looks at the best interests of the child in making the ultimate decision.
A guardian ad litem is appointed by the court and represents the best interests of the child or children. They are authorized to gather whatever information may be necessary for the court to make a custody determination, including speaking with the school officials, mental health professionals, visit the home of the parents and speak to witnesses.
Beth Ann Smith has many years of experience in dealing with custody issues. Beth Ann Smith has represented both fathers and mothers and advocated their rights always maintaining what is in the best interests of the children in the forefront. Beth Ann Smith has represented many fathers who have gained custody of their children. We try to keep your expectations grounded in reality and never make false promises as to what the outcome of a custody case will be.