Experienced Child Custody Attorneys in South Carolina
One of the toughest parts of divorce in South Carolina is determining who gets custody of the children after the dissolution.
At the David W. Martin Law Group, our South Carolina child custody lawyers understand that both parents want what is best for their kids, and sometimes those wishes can lead to heated debates and emotional responses.
At the beginning of divorce proceedings, it is often difficult for parents to protect their rights and ensure the child’s best interests at the same time.
As a certified mediator and child custody attorney in South Carolina serving clients throughout South Carolina, the David W. Martin Law Group can provide the dedicated support you need during a child custody battle to achieve the best outcome available for your unique divorce circumstances.
Are There Different Types of Child Custody Agreements in South Carolina?
Our South Carolina child custody attorneys convey to each of our clients that their divorce and the needs of their children are unique to their marriage and parenting skills.
The goal of the court is to oversee child custody arrangements that place the best interests of the children first.
In doing so, parents can determine a child custody agreement together, during mediation, or they can allow the judge to decide for them, which may be necessary when the parents are on opposite sides of the discussion and cannot come to an agreement.
The different types of child custody that must be settled during a South Carolina divorce include:
- Legal Custody
Legal custody refers to the parental right to make decisions about the education, healthcare, and welfare of the children.
- Physical Custody
Physical custody refers to children’s living arrangements and the parents’ visitation schedules.
These determinations will be awarded as sole or joint custody.
Sole physical custody designates one parent as the residential parent, which is the parent the child(ren) will live with, while the other parent is entitled to scheduled visitations.
From the South Carolina family court’s standpoint, joint custody is the preferred outcome, which will allow the children to split their time with both parents during an agreed-upon shared parenting plan.
How Does the South Carolina Family Court Determine Child Custody?
At the David W. Martin Law Group, our Fort Mill Family Law Attorney evaluates each of our client’s unique divorce proceedings to learn each detail of how the children were parented during the marriage, so we can present our client’s case accurately and aggressively.
Our South Carolina family courts will determine child custody arrangements based on those details, which can include, but are not limited to:
- The fitness of each parent to care for a child
- The quality of the child’s current home environment
- History of violence or abuse from either parent
- Proximity to school, healthcare facilities, and other necessities
- The child’s preference and relationship with each parent (when applicable)
Our child custody lawyers in South Carolina know these arguments can become emotionally overwhelming, as both parents often fight to keep their kids with them believing that is the best place for them to be.
Unfortunately, the court will not simply take your word for it. We must build your case with facts and evidence to ensure we are pursuing the best outcome for both our clients and their children.
Our South Carolina child custody lawyers handle traditional child custody cases, high conflict child custody disputes, parenting plan agreements, and other difficult circumstances, including:
- Emergency Custody Actions
- Father’s Rights
- Grandparents Rights
- Relocation Requests/Permission
We will outline your South Carolina child custody case based on the best interests of the children, which may include which parent was charged with their care during the marriage.
For instance, if one spouse was a stay-at-home parent for the duration of the marriage, it is unlikely that the other spouse will denounce that fact and suddenly want to become the sole caretaker, unless there has been a change in the other parent’s physical, emotional, or psychological ability to care for the children.
We will assess the circumstances of your divorce to ensure any child custody agreements we design will support a healthy and happy lifestyle for the children after the marriage comes to an end.
Can We Create a Child Custody Plan Without the Court’s Involvement in South Carolina?
Although the courts can and will rule on child custody arrangements, it is usually preferred for the parents to come to an agreement on their own.
This can either be accomplished through alternative dispute resolution, or ADR, strategies such as mediation or through conventional court proceedings.
During mediation or ADR sessions, child custody details can be established by both parents, including where the children will live, go to school, and when and at what frequency they will share time between the two households.
Our legal team will work with you to help reduce the stress divorce and child custody proceedings have on your family, so the transition is as smooth as possible.
Our Family Law Lawyers in South Carolina Represent Clients in the Following Practice Areas:
- Property Division
- Alimony / Spousal Support
- Child Support
- Legal Separation
- Emergency Custody Actions
- Child Relocation
- Father’s Rights
- Grandparents Rights
What If Parents Cannot Agree on Any Aspect of Child Custody in South Carolina?
Sometimes, high-conflict divorces make agreeing on any aspect of child custody in South Carolina seemingly impossible.
Whether it is one or both parents’ personalities to be adversarial and to want to be the one who “wins,” or if the conflict has erupted from the cause of the marriage’s dissolution including common high conflict issues like adultery or drug use it can produce strong negative emotions like blame, guilt, and resentment, that keeps couples from reaching timely resolutions in child custody disputes in South Carolina.
When this is the case, our child custody attorneys in South Carolina reiterate to both parents that high-conflict divorces are damaging to the psychological and emotional well-being of the children.
Often, when parents are busy fighting over who is to blame for the divorce, and the resulting consequences, the best interests of the kids get lost in the shuffle.
Instead, we like to focus on what can we do to alleviate the situation and provide legal solutions that will guide our clients to an agreement.
This can take time, but the focus should return to the children and what is best for their futures, which ultimately, means having both parents in their lives when they can provide healthy support for the kids’ growth.
Whether you and your spouse agree on child custody matters or have many areas of contention holding you back from making an agreement, our Fort Mill & Greenville child custody lawyer will strive to reach an arrangement that works for you and your family. With offices located in both Greenville and Fort Mill, we make it easy to get the help you need throughout the state of South Carolina.
Contact Our Child Custody Attorneys in South Carolina to Schedule a Consultation Today
South Carolina Child custody arrangements are not easy to come by. We understand. After a divorce, you want what is best for your children, which is often that they stay with you, in the home they are accustomed to living in.
To learn more about how the court will evaluate both parents’ abilities to raise the children with their best interests at the forefront of their agreement, contact our Fort Mill child custody lawyers to schedule a consultation by calling (803) 548-2468 today.