Child Custody Laws And Relocation In Georgia

The Georgia Supreme Court has determined that relocation may constitute a material change in circumstance that would warrant a modification of custody or changing a child custody agreement. Custody modifications are a serious issue that can affect parents' relationships with their children. Even though a custodial parent may move or relocate for a legitimate reason, it can still lead to a change of primary physical custody.

For this reason, it's essential to contact Thomas A. Camp, P.C., a skilled family law firm that can assist you if you are contemplating a move that may require an alteration to an existing child custody agreement or parenting plan.

Weighing All Factors

Instead of assuming that a move will benefit all parties, courts must now carefully weigh each move on a case-by-case basis to determine if the move is in a child's best interest.

There are, of course, a multitude of legitimate reasons why a parent could choose to move. He or she could make a personal decision to relocate for work, school or another opportunity.

While a court will consider reasons for the move, any change that could disrupt a child's relationship with both parents and his or her regular routine will likely necessitate alterations to an existing parenting plan. Moving out of state will almost always require changes to existing parenting plans.

Parenting plans are important to determine how a child will split time with parents. These plans stipulate which parent will have the child on weekdays, weekends, holidays and summers.

Skilled Thoughtful Representation To Help Your Family

Even parental relocations that aren't out of state or even long distance can have a significant impact on the parenting dynamic if custody doesn't ultimately change. Schedules will have to be changed as a child adjusts to a new school, neighborhood and home.

Because moves, including short distance moves, can dramatically affect a child's upbringing, a court will often look at the circumstances of the move and the parenting factors to determine if a modification to a custody or parenting plan — large or small — is warranted.

Of course there are other issues that can require a modification, such as a change in work schedule, family status, medical circumstances and other issues that have nothing to do with moving away. These too, could necessitate changes to a parenting plan or custody arrangement that need to be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by a court.

Because there are so many factors that can affect relationships with your children, it's important to call Thomas A. Camp, P.C., a family law attorney with years of experience helping those dealing with child custody and parenting plan issues.

To learn more about the skilled representation a lawyer can provide, please contact our Athens, Georgia, law firm today at 706-621-6284 or toll free at 866-475-8658.