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Augusta Motor Vehicle Accident Law Blog

Defending your parenting time rights

The time that a parent spends with their child is irreplaceable, both for the parent and the child. For parents who raise their children separately after divorce, sharing this time can lead to serious conflicts that affect the whole family. This is particularly true when one or both parents undermine each other's authority and rights to spend their parenting time the way they choose.

When one parent takes away another's time with their child, or when a parent's behavior manipulates their child against the other parent, this may qualify as parenting time interference. Courts take parenting time rights seriously, and may punish a parent who violates parenting time guidelines with loss of parenting privileges, mandatory make-up days for lost parenting time, and even criminal charges, in some cases.

Could virtual visitation work for you and your children?

If you don't have physical custody of your children, there's a good chance you have visitation rights.

While face-to-face visits are extremely important to maintaining a healthy relationship with your children, there may be a few challenges standing in your way. For example, if you travel a lot for business, it may be difficult to carve out time in your schedule to spend time with your children.

Do you have rights as a grandparent to visitation time?

As social norms change, the laws that guide critical decisions change as well. Grandparents' rights were legally non-existent in most places just a few decades ago. With the increasing risk of the opioid epidemic and other familial issues giving rise to grandparents raising their grandchildren, more grandparents are eager to protect their relationship with their grandchildren through legal means.

Some states have taken steps to legally enshrine the rights of grandparents. Others analyze situations on a case-by-case basis, focusing on the situation instead of any statute. Grandparents in Georgia or South Carolina may want to establish legal rights to their grandchildren or protect an existing relationship. Learning a little more about how the courts handle these situations can help you make better decisions about your family.

Co-parenting with a virtual stranger can be challenging

When married couples with children divorce, they have their previous relationship to look back on when plotting their new co-parenting roles. While that can be both good and bad, it, at least, provides a familiar framework upon which a co-parenting relationship can be built.

But not all co-parenting relationships arise from failed marriages or even relationships. Some babies are born as a result of one-night stands or other fleeting and nebulous relationships between the parents. These situations can pose many dilemmas because, in reality, the parents may hardly know one another.

4 ways to deal with the stress of divorce

For many people, divorce can be absolutely devastating. It often elicits a roller coaster of emotions that can be mentally and physically taxing. When you experience these kinds of overwhelming emotions, they can take over and you might feel like your life is spinning out of control. This is not uncommon for either men or women going through a divorce. But, if left unchecked, the emotional effects of divorce can have long-term negative consequences.

When going through a divorce, it is important to focus on what you need to be healthy and happy. This will alleviate a great deal of the stress that typically comes hand-in-hand with the divorce process. Here are a few ways you can combat the negative aspects of ending a marriage.

How can I make the adoption process go smoothly?

Making the decision to adopt a child is one of the biggest choices you will make in your life. You will be transforming not only your own life but the life of a child in need of a loving home.

The adoption process can often be stressful and overwhelming. If you want to ensure that you minimize complications in the adoption process, it's important to plan ahead. Staying organized throughout the adoption process is key, but managing the expectations of your family is also important so that disappointments are avoided. The following are some helpful tips in ensuring a smooth adoption process.

Facing drug charges? You can challenge the evidence

Drug possession charges are serious matters, and in the wrong circumstances can lead to months or even years of jail time. No matter what kind of possession charges you face, you should begin building a defense to protect your rights and your future opportunities as soon as you can.

Many defendants feel hopeless and believe that the evidence against them is simply too strong, and they give up before they even consider all their options. This is dangerously foolish, especially considering that drug charges are often not as air-tight as they may seem at first.

Your kids aren't messengers: There are other options

Children are sensitive to divorce and changes in their lives. The last thing any parent should do is put them in the middle of a conflict. Unfortunately, some parents do this by having their children inform their other parent about activities or thoughts that they have.

Even if it's something as simple as, "Mom told me to tell you she can't pick me up next week," it's a problem. Children should never be the messenger in divorce, especially with situations where it could negatively affect or frustrate the other parent.

If you can't get along with your ex, communicate in writing

One of the most difficult things about divorcing with kids is the fact that you can't really get away from your ex. No matter how badly your marriage ends, you are going to have an ongoing relationship with your former spouse.

You will, at the very least, need to see one another for custody exchanges. Ideally, for the best outcome for your kids, you can even agree to some overlapping custody or visitation. This can include holidays, birthdays or special events, such as graduations, so that you can both be present for these important moments. For some couples, minimizing the direct contact you have is one way to lessen the potential for conflict.

Learn how to maximize supervised visits with the kids

It can be a blow to receive only supervised visitation with your children during or after a divorce. But savvy parents can learn to use these supervised visits to their advantage.

It's possible that, in time and with the continued success of the visits, parents may be awarded unsupervised visits with their kids. While it might be discouraging to realize that a judge feels you need supervision when you interact with your children, keep in mind that all is being done with your kids' best interests at heart.