Protecting Your Children And Your Parental Rights
Few issues are as intense and complicated as custody and parenting disputes. How do you stand up for yourself and your kids without creating a tug-of-war? How do you make it work when you have such different ideas about raising your children?
With 30 years of experience in child custody matters, I can help you resolve these seemingly impossible conflicts. At the same time, I will advocate fiercely for your parental rights and the best interests of your children. I have every confidence we will find a way forward for you and your family.
Understanding How Custody Works
I help my clients understand the practical realities of custody law so they can make wise decisions and avoid unnecessary legal battles. This includes explaining how the court determines what the division of parenting time will be and how to work with your child’s other parent on legal custody matters such as making decision about education, health care and religious upbringing. Typically, you will have joint legal custody, even if one of you gets physical custody. So you still must work together and communicate as co-parents even if your children spend most of their time in one household.
In most cases, one parent is granted primary physical custody and the other parent has a fixed amount of scheduled parenting time (visitation). Sole physical or legal custody – cutting the other parent out of the picture – is granted only when a parent poses a serious threat to the child’s well-being.
Working Out Solutions For Custody And Co-Parenting
These are some of the considerations for parents (or the court) in determining custody and parenting time:
- The age of the children and their needs
- The preference of an older child
- Health concerns of the child or the parents
- The parent-child relationship
- The ability to provide a stable home environment
- The location of and distance between the parents’ homes
- Any history of physical violence or emotional abuse
I encourage clients to reach a workable compromise that is truly centered on the best interests of the children. The alternative is to have the court step in to impose a “solution.” I work with clients on the specifics of the parenting plan to address schedules, pick-up/drop-off details, extracurricular activities, vacations and holidays. The best custody agreement is thorough and specific, yet practical and flexible so that you are able to make it all work without resorting to the courts.
Experience For Contested Proceedings
While I emphasize out-of-court solutions, there are times when you have to fight or it is simply necessary for a judge to step in. I have represented parents on both sides of contested custody and parenting time, petitions for sole custody, parent relocation, paternity and father’s rights. I also work with parents on modification and enforcement of custody orders and child support arrangements. You can count on me to strongly assert your interests.
Call Today To Start Moving Your Family Forward
Both you and your child’s other parent have rights and you will always be co-parents. At the Law Office of Toni L. Sessoms, P.C., we help you find balance and real solutions while firmly asserting your rights and your goals. To arrange a consultation, call my Mount Pleasant office at 989-779-9700 or contact me online.