How is child custody decided in Georgia?

| Aug 16, 2018 | Firm News

The health and happiness of your child is one of the most important parts of your life. If you are in the process of obtaining custody of your child, you may wonder if a judge will agree that you are the best possible parent for your child. How do Georgia judges determine who gets custody?

The phrase “best interests of the child” is often used in reference to child custody hearings. Courts in Georgia use this guideline in figuring out how to award custody, but this concept has different factors.

What factors influence child custody decisions?

There are many different aspects that go into determining what the best interests of a child are. In court, a judge awards custody based on this concept of “best interests” and there are many ways they can come to this conclusion.

All of the factors that make up this decision are based on the circumstances of safety, health and happiness of a child. This means that the parent who can provide a living situation that provides these three elements will most likely be awarded the custody plan they want.

Some of the different considerations a judge may think about when coming to a decision are:

  • Emotional ties between each parent and child
  • Familiarity of the parent with the child’s specific needs
  • Home environment
  • Ability of the parent to provide for the child (clothes, food, education etc.)
  • Stability of the home life of each parent
  • Willingness of the parent to encourage and provide for the child
  • Mental and physical health of each parent
  • Schedule and work load of each parent
  • How well each parent can maintain child’s current life (proximity to friends and family, current school, etc.)

These are just a few of many elements a judge can look at in order to figure out what the best situation for your children will be. They can also look at recommendations provided by a custody evaluator, as well as past legal transgressions and background of each parent.

During the custody proceedings, the judge will consider these factors and use them to determine what your child’s best interests are. They will listen to the points made by each parent and make a decision based on what they think will be the best circumstances for your child.