At National Family Solutions, we work with people who are dealing with all sorts of situations as they navigate their divorce and custody arrangements. In fact, there are few circumstances that we haven’t come across as we helping parents learn how to represent themselves to secure a solid future for themselves and their children. Read on to find out about some of these situations and how they might apply to you.
Out of State Custody Arrangements
What happens when one parent lives out of state or needs or wants to move out of state after the divorce is final? In general, whatever is agreed upon before the move is what will be enforced after the move. If the out-of-state move is only 30 minutes away, for example, this shouldn’t change very much other than perhaps weekday visitation times if the children are in school.
If one parent moves across the country, however, that’s a different story. The judge in your home state (where the divorce took place) might or might not approve the type of visitation you would like to have. Also, if the parent with primary custody wants to move out of state, the judge might not allow him or her to take the children. Everything that’s decided is in the best interest of the children, so pleading your case well, doing what’s best for your kids, and knowing the law can help you.
Helping Parents With Guardianships and Conservatorships
Not all custody cases involve minor children. When an adult child has special needs that make it impossible for him or her to live alone or to be responsible for him- or herself or their finances, often the parents or another responsible adult become legally responsible for the individual. If you and your spouse divorce, a judge will have to grant one of you guardianship and/or conservatorship over the adult child.
Accusations of Abuse or Neglect
There’s nothing more heartbreaking than child abuse and neglect when it comes to divorce cases. Sometimes the accusations of abuse have merit and the other parent is desperate to keep their child safe from the abuse. Other times, the accusations are made out of malice and they are untrue. In that case, it’s the accused parent who is desperate not to lose physical custody or visitation with his or her child.
We have helping parents navigate actual cases of abuse as well as phony accusations. Knowing how to present your case to a judge to prove that your ex is abusive or that you are innocent is the first step toward having the situation solved in a way that keeps your rights and the rights of your child protected.
Alcohol and Opioid Dependencies
Drug or alcohol addiction is prevalent enough to affect a large number of marriages; it stands to reason that addiction also affects a large number of divorces and custody trials. It’s important to keep children safe, and that is the primary concern of National Family Solutions when helping parents and also of the judge.
If you or your spouse is dealing with an addiction or a dependency, the top priority needs to be getting help. A parent who is willing to do what it takes to get well has a chance of getting visitation with their child. A parent who is unable to recover from their addiction might be jeopardizing their rights to have unsupervised visitation or joint physical custody. We work on helping parents in these situations.
Child Psychology and Parent Evaluations
If a parent moves to establish custody or visitation, sometimes a parental evaluation is needed. This is often the case if one parent is accusing the other of abuse or neglect, if there is a history of drug abuse, or if one parent has a criminal record. National Family Solutions is helping parents as legal family advocates who can perform scientifically based assessments that show evidence that you are a competent parent.
Guardian Ad Litem
A guardian ad litem, or GAL, is a legal professional whose job it is to discern where the child will be safest and have the best chance at life. Often, a judge will assign a GAL when there is a custody dispute, particularly if there is any chance that one or both parents are not up to the task of full-time parenting. Sometimes a GAL is assigned for other reasons, too; we can help you with your case if a GAL is involved.
If you are dealing with any of these issues or anything else that you think is outside the realm of “ideal” or “usual” when it comes to a divorce, chances are very good that National Family Solutions can help. Visit our website or call us today to find out more about what we do and how we are helping parents just like you. Remember that you are not alone. With your legal resource group behind you, you can successfully represent yourself in court through your divorce and custody situation.