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Child Custody: 4 Questions to Ask a Lawyer

When it comes to your children, you’ll do anything to protect them. When someone tells you that you can’t see your children as much as you’d like, you’re going to be upset. This is understandable. That’s why a child custody attorney in Charlotte works so hard to help their clients modify their child custody arrangements.

If you’ve already scheduled your initial consultation with one of our family law attorneys in Charlotte, you are probably wondering how to prepare. You don’t get a lot of time with your lawyer, so you want to make the most of the time you have. That’s why we always recommend our clients jot down notes and questions in the days and weeks leading up to your initial meeting.

No matter what else you do, there are 4 things you want to make sure to ask your family law attorney in Charlotte. Here, we’ll discuss what these 4 things are. We’ll also explain why it’s so important that you ask these questions when you first sit down with your attorney.

Make Sure You Ask How Child Custody Impacts Child Support in North Carolina

Not all people realize that your child custody arrangement is directly tied to your child support. The more time you spend with your children, the less you pay in child support. Thankfully, we have very few clients who petition the court for additional parenting time simply to reduce their child support. That is not in the best interests of the children.

However, if you are seriously hoping to spend more time with your children, then lower child support may just be a by-product of your goal. If you already have a custody plan in place, you’ll have to file a motion with the court. Our child custody attorneys in Charlotte have filed dozens of these motions with the family courts. We understand what needs to go into the motion. We also know what the judges are looking for.

If you choose to pursue a modified child custody arrangement, then you’ll want to file a motion to reduce child support at the same time. If, on the other hand, you are asking to reduce parenting time, expect your child support to increase. Of course, your family law attorney in Charlotte won’t voluntarily request an increase in support. Just expect the other parent to file their own motion to increase child support.

Always Ask Your Family Law Attorney in Charlotte the Difference Between Physical and Legal Custody

It’s important that you understand the difference between physical and legal custody. Some people agree to things when they get divorced and then wonder if they made the right decision later. When it comes to child custody, there are two ways of looking at it.

Physical custody is the actual time each parent will spend with their children. The court only cares about how many days each parent will have the kids per month. It doesn’t matter if you have your children one day per month or thirty. It doesn’t impact your legal custody at all.

Legal custody has to do with the power each parent has over major decisions regarding their kids. For example, typically, both parents have equal say over their children’s medical issues. The same is true for education. It is unusual for either parent to be kept out of these important decisions.

When two parents share legal custody, it is called joint custody. It is normal for parents to have joint legal custody as well as joint physical custody. If you’re looking to push for more time with your children, your family law attorney in Charlotte can help. It will not affect your legal custody.

child custody attorney in Charlotte

Remember to Ask Your Child Custody Attorney in Charlotte About Moving Out of State

One of the most difficult things to do in family court is to convince a judge to allow you to move your kids out of state. The courts are very reluctant to let one parent move their children away from the other parent.

If your spouse has threatened to move your children out of state, you have options. Call one of our child custody attorneys in Charlotte and set up an appointment right away. We can file a motion asking to court to prohibit your ex-spouse from taking the kids away from you.

The courts never want to separate children from their parents. They also don’t approve of uprooting young children from their home, schools, family, and friends. If the other parent is attempting to do this, the odds are not in their favor.

Don’t Forget to Confirm Your Existing Child Custody Arrangement

When a couple gets divorced and has children, they need to hash out child custody issues. This is often one of the most important issues spelled out in your marital settlement agreement. Your agreement should specify exactly what the custody arrangement will be. It should outline how many days each parent will have physical custody of the children.

The arrangement should also specify which holidays the two parents will spend with their children. Typically, parents agree to alternate holidays. If you’re having an issue with this, let your family law attorney in Charlotte know. They can review your marital settlement agreement as well as the original court order to see what your current arrangement is supposed to be. Then, if need be, they can always file a motion to modify custody.

Keep in mind – filing a motion is a last resort. If you can convince the other parent to consent to a new schedule, it will save you time and money.

Contact an Experienced Child Custody Attorney in Charlotte Today

If you’re looking to change your current child custody arrangement, call our office and talk to a family law attorney in Charlotte. Our child custody lawyers have decades of combined experience handling matters such as this. Let them know what you’re looking to achieve and they’ll let you know what your options are.