Can a Judge Interview My Child in a GA Child Custody Dispute?

Deeper Understanding. Better Solutions.
serious single mom and sad unhappy child sitting on sofa and discussing social behaviour

Nothing cuts through the heart quite like the strain of a divorce, especially when children are involved. Amid the turmoil of custody battles, many parents find themselves asking, “Can a judge interview my child in a child custody dispute?” In Georgia, the answer is yes, a phenomenon known as a custodial interview. This complex process may feel overwhelming, but with the guidance of divorce attorneys in Marietta, GA, navigating these waters becomes significantly easier.

What is a Custodial Interview With a Child?

In Georgia, a judge can indeed conduct a custodial interview with a child, a process initiated based on the judge’s discretion or upon the request of a party. According to O.C.G.A § 19-9-3(a)(6), judges in Georgia are vested with the power to speak with the child privately to get an unfiltered understanding of the child’s preferences and feelings about the custodial arrangement.

Reasons Why a Judge May Interview a Child

The judicial system in Georgia is firmly committed to ensuring the best interest of the child in any custody dispute. There are a few primary reasons a judge might decide to conduct a custodial interview:

Your divorce attorney Marietta, GA, at the Law Offices of William R. Pike Law, LLC, can help prepare you and your child for this process, ensuring your rights and your child’s best interests are protected. Our combined years of experience and compassionate approach ensure that you and your child’s needs are prioritized. In the midst of these challenging times, you don’t have to feel alone. Contact us today to learn how we can serve as your guide and advocate during your child custody dispute in GA.

hands of wife, husband signing decree of divorce

It’s a question as old as the divorce courts themselves: does it matter who files for divorce first? A topic rife with anxiety and uncertainty, divorce is a life-changing event that calls for expert advice and guidance. This is where divorce lawyers in Marietta, Georgia, come in to demystify this puzzle for you.

Benefits of Filing First for Divorce in GA

Divorce in GA isn’t a race to the courthouse. However, there might be some advantages to being the first to file. For instance, the spouse who initiates the proceedings, also known as the petitioner, often has a tad more control over the pace of the proceedings. They get to present their case first, which can set the tone for the divorce proceedings and subtly influence the judge’s perception of the entire case.

This isn’t to say the respondent (the spouse who is served the divorce papers) is at a severe disadvantage. Far from it. They have the opportunity to respond to the petitioner’s claims and demands and present their case effectively too.

The financial and custody outcomes do not typically differ significantly based on who initiates the divorce. The critical factor is having a competent and experienced legal representative on your side.

Have the Best Divorce Lawyers in Marietta, Georgia

Whether you’re the petitioner or the respondent in a divorce, having a knowledgeable and dedicated legal ally can significantly impact the process’s emotional and financial burdens. The Law Offices of William R. Pike Law, LLC, has the expertise, compassion, and resources to guide you through the tumultuous seas of divorce in GA. Our team of experienced divorce lawyers in Marietta, Georgia, is committed to helping you understand your rights, explore your options, and make sound decisions. We strive to ensure your voice is heard and your interests are well represented. Contact us today and allow us to ease your path to a fresh start.

beautiful couple in a restaurant

The tangle of emotions and legal complexities during a divorce can be a challenging journey. As the pendulum of life sways, you might find yourself contemplating the question, “Can I date during the divorce process?” Amid the whirlwind of the divorce process, it’s natural to seek companionship and warmth. But is it wise, or even legal? Let’s delve deeper into the implications, particularly when going through a divorce in GA, under the guidance of the experienced Marietta divorce attorneys.

Intricacies of Dating During Divorce

The decision to start dating during divorce is not one to be taken lightly. It’s an emotionally charged topic with potential legal consequences. This is where our dedicated divorce attorneys in Marietta, GA, step in, ensuring you have all the relevant information to make an informed decision.

When you’re in the middle of a divorce, the law doesn’t explicitly prohibit dating. However, dating during divorce could potentially affect the outcome of your divorce proceedings in Georgia. It might stir up emotional turmoil, complicate settlement negotiations, and even impact the custody of your children. In some instances, dating could be viewed as adultery, even if the couple has separated and is pursuing a divorce.

Leverage the Expertise of Divorce Attorneys in Marietta, GA

Deciding whether or not to date during a divorce is a deeply personal choice. However, understanding the potential legal ramifications is crucial. Let our team at the Law Offices of William R. Pike Law, LLC, guide you through the maze of divorce laws in Georgia. Our seasoned divorce attorneys in Marietta, GA, stand ready to provide the necessary legal guidance and support. We understand that each case is unique, and we’re here to offer tailored legal advice that aligns with your circumstances and goals. Trust our expertise to help you navigate safely the complex process of divorce in GA. Reach out to us today and let us help you make informed decisions, safeguarding your future.

man and woman dividing their property after divorce

A couple of seasons into the union you once deemed unshakeable, and here you are, unraveling the complex web of Georgia’s divorce laws. While divorce is never an easy journey, understanding your state’s stance is essential. So, we ask the pertinent question, “Is Georgia a 50-50 divorce state?” Let’s dive into this topic together and unravel the mysteries of divorce in GA.

What is a 50-50 Divorce State?

First things first, it’s crucial to understand what we mean when we refer to a 50-50 divorce state. This term refers to the legal jurisdictions where marital assets are divided equally between spouses in the event of a divorce. In these states, the law assumes an egalitarian division of property.

However, not all states adhere to this principle. Some follow the equitable distribution rule, and Georgia falls into this category.

Equitable Distribution in Georgia

In an equitable distribution state like Georgia, the courts don’t necessarily divide the marital assets 50-50. Instead, they consider numerous factors to ensure a fair distribution of property. The court takes into account each spouse’s financial situation, contributions to the marriage (both economic and otherwise), the length of the marriage, and more.

It is important to note that equitable does not mean equal. It means fair. The court aims to divide the assets in a way that serves justice and fairness, which might not always translate to an equal split.

Secure Your Interests During Asset Distribution

Going through a divorce is tough, and comprehending the legal intricacies can add to the strain. At the Law Offices of William R. Pike Law, LLC, our dedicated and proficient team is ready to assist you. Our divorce attorneys in Marietta, GA, are equipped to navigate the complex landscape of equitable distribution, represent your interests effectively, and aim for the fairest outcome. In this time of transition and uncertainty, let us provide the professional support you need. Contact us today and let us help you chart your course to a brighter future.

word child support composed of wooden letters

Have you ever found yourself in a maze, trying to decipher the intricacies of child support law, especially when it comes to calculating military income? If you’re living in Georgia, the Law Offices of William R. Pike Law LLC can help bring clarity to your situation.

Child Support Calculation in Georgia

The process of divorce is never simple, and the complexities multiply when children are involved. One of the key aspects that need careful consideration in such circumstances is child support.

Child support is primarily determined by the income shares model, which considers the incomes of both parents. Georgia’s child support guidelines provide a worksheet and basic child support obligation table to aid in the calculation. The gross income of both parents is considered, including but not limited to salaries, commissions, self-employment income, bonuses, overtime payments, severance pay, and recurring income from pensions.

Calculating Military Income

The state of Georgia has specific laws addressing the calculation of child support for military personnel. The Georgia statute O.C.G.A 19-6-15 (f)(1)(E) sets clear guidelines on this matter. It stipulates that when determining a service member’s gross income for child support, only a portion of the Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) should be included – specifically, the part not attributable to area variable housing costs.

To further simplify these calculations, Georgia has introduced a Non-locality Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH II). This chart provides the housing rate according to rank without considering the locality and avoids the need for child support modification each time a service member relocates, fostering a fair and unambiguous calculation process.

Maximizing Child Custody Support

Comprehending and calculating military income for child support in Georgia requires in-depth knowledge of specific statutes, attention to detail, and a great deal of patience. Trusting professionals like the Law Offices of William R. Pike Law LLC to guide you through this process not only ease the burden but ensure accuracy and fairness. Contact us today to schedule a consultation, and together, let’s navigate the path to a fair and equitable resolution.

agreement prepared by lawyer signing decree of divorce

The end of a marriage is often a trying time filled with uncertainty. One way to reduce this uncertainty is by engaging with a trustworthy divorce lawyer. An initial consultation with divorce attorneys in Marietta, GA, can make a difference. This consultation involves an exchange of vital information, in which you’ll be asked several key questions.

Questions a Divorce Attorney Will Ask

During a divorce lawyer consultation, your attorney’s inquiries will generally fall into three main categories: your personal circumstances, financial considerations, and child-related matters.

Personal Circumstances

They need to understand the specific context of your situation. Questions may include the length of your marriage, the grounds for divorce, any history of domestic violence, and whether it’s a contested or uncontested divorce.

Financial Considerations

The complexities of your financial picture need to be mapped out. Questions might encompass your and your spouse’s income, assets, liabilities, and retirement accounts, among other things.

Child-Related Matters

If there are children involved, your attorney will ask questions regarding their welfare and custody arrangements. This may involve asking about their ages, current living situations, and preferences for custody arrangements.

Questions a divorce attorney asks during a consultation are framed to create a comprehensive understanding of your situation. Each divorce is unique, and every client requires a tailored approach. This process assures that divorce attorneys in Marietta, GA, can provide the best possible service, using accurate and current interpretations of the relevant laws and codes.

Schedule Your Divorce Consultation With Our Divorce Attorney in Marietta, GA

The Law Offices of William R. Pike Law LLC is your trusted partner in navigating the thorny path of divorce. Our initial consultation is designed to understand your needs better and establish a robust foundation for your case. Reach out to us today for a divorce consultation and let’s turn the tide in your favor with our expert guidance and support.

family book time

Co-parenting is not the easiest thing, especially if you’re a separated couple that doesn’t get along. Yet, for the best interests of the child, you put your differences aside. But what is co parenting and what does it look like?

Co-Parenting in Dallas, GA

Co-parenting contrasts with traditional parenting, where parents have a relationship that focuses entirely on the child and not each other. The child will spend some time with one parent and then spend time with the other parent.

Joint Custody vs. Sole Custody

If you are separated from your partner, there is merit to keeping a co-parenting relationship instead of one parent having sole custody. According to one study, children thrive better in joint than in sole custody.

Co Parenting Tips

Co-parenting is a common practice in Dallas, GA, and it can be challenging to navigate without proper guidance. Here are some tips on what co-parenting looks like


One of the biggest tips you can get is to be flexible. This is a cooperation between you and the other parent, and if they need you to take the kid longer, it is good to have a plan for that. This can also be done with the understanding that if you scratch their back, they will scratch yours.

Forgive and Forget

A successful co-parenting relationship is one where all the baggage is left at the door. If you still hold resentment towards your ex-partner, for the child’s sake, you need to unlearn that – they can pick up on that really easily. That does not mean you have to be their best friend, but you shouldn’t be their worst enemy. If you are having issues with a co-parenting relationship, it is important to get help from Dallas GA family lawyers. Contact the Law Offices of William R. Pike Law, LLC, to get the ball rolling as soon as possible.

annoyed unhappy married couple arguing in lawyers office get divorced

Divorce mediation is an increasingly popular alternative to traditional divorce litigation in Georgia. It offers several benefits, including cost savings, faster resolution times, and greater control over the outcome. Have you wondered what to know about divorce mediation?

Benefits of Divorce Mediation

Divorce mediation is when a neutral third-party mediator facilitates discussions between divorcing couples to help them reach a mutually acceptable settlement. It is a voluntary and confidential alternative to traditional divorce litigation that offers numerous benefits, such as cost savings, privacy, and control over the outcome.

If you are considering divorce mediation, consult an experienced attorney such as the Law Offices of William R. Pike Law, LLC.

What Things To Consider When Divorce Mediation Is on the Table?

While divorce mediation can be an effective alternative to traditional litigation, it is not suitable for everyone. When considering divorce mediation, it is important to weigh several factors, such as the level of conflict between the parties, the complexity of the issues involved, and the willingness of both parties to negotiate in good faith. Other things to consider when divorce mediation include the availability of a qualified mediator and whether both parties feel comfortable with the process.

Finding a Divorce Mediator

Finding the right divorce mediator helps the process go smoothly and both parties feel heard and respected. One way to find a qualified mediator is to seek recommendations from divorce lawyers in Paulding County, GA. Researching the mediator’s credentials, experience, and approach is essential to ensure that they are a good fit for your needs and goals. If you are considering divorce mediation, it is important to consult with a qualified mediator or attorney to discuss your options. Contact us today at the Law Offices of William R. Pike Law, LLC, to learn more about how we can help you achieve a successful outcome.

prenuptial agreement

Marriage is beautiful, but many people want to protect their assets in case of divorce. A prenuptial agreement, commonly called a prenup, is a contract created before marriage that outlines how assets will be divided if the couple splits up. Things like financial situations, the birth of children, and change in state laws can change. With these, you may wonder, “can prenups be changed?”

Can You Change a Prenup After Marriage in Georgia?

The short answer is yes. In Georgia, you can change your prenup after marriage as long as both parties agree to the changes. If you and your spouse agree, you can have the prenup amended. This requires a legal document to be written that states these changes.

If you want to make many big changes, you may consider voiding the original prenup and starting a new one from scratch. This new prenup would replace the old one entirely. Whether you amend your current prenup or create a new one, both parties must sign the document.

If you want to modify your prenup in Georgia, request assistance from Dallas GA family lawyers at the Law Offices of William R. Pike Law, LLC. We can help you amend your current prenup or create a new prenup that works for both you and your spouse.

Reasons You Might Want To Change a Prenup

Here are a few common reasons you may want to change your prenup to protect your family and assets.

  1. Financial changes such as inheriting a large sum of money or if one spouse starts their own business.
  2. Marital changes, such as when the couple has kids.
  3. State law changes regarding prenups.
  4. Address unanticipated issues that the couple wasn’t aware of before marriage.

For help changing your prenup in Georgia, call the Law Offices of William R. Pike Law, LLC at 678-564-0199. We can help make the process as seamless as possible.

selective focus of couple sitting at table with divorce documents

When a divorce is finalized, it is rare for both parties to be completely satisfied with the outcome. Over time, circumstances change, and what may have worked in the past may no longer be ideal — many people are in this position.

If you think that your existing divorce agreement is subject to alterations for some reason, family law lawyer William R. Pike Law LLC can assist you. He can help you make the necessary changes in negotiation with your ex-spouse bearing what is in the child’s best interest.

Below are some of the most common reasons ex-couple changes their divorce arrangements in Georgia.

Common Reasons To Change Your Divorce Arrangements

One Spouse Starts a New Relationship

Starting a new relationship changes both spouses’ financial situation and can significantly impact support payments. Financial support is based on the income and assets of each spouse. So, if one spouse remarries, the support payments may need to be recalculated. If you have questions about how remarriage will affect your divorce arrangements, speak to divorce lawyers in Paulding County, GA.

The Ex Relocates to a New Area

There are many difficult aspects of divorce, but one of the most difficult can be when one parent has to move. This can cause many problems with visitation and custody arrangements.

This can be difficult for non-custodial parents, who may travel long distances to see their children. Divorce lawyers in Paulding County GA can help both parties understand their custodial rights.

Loss of Employment

If someone has lost a job, it will behoove the couple to inspect the terms of their divorce settlement agreement in Georgia. Many divorced couples have provisions in their agreements that need to be changed in case of a loss of employment.

Changes in Children’s Needs

It is not uncommon for the needs of children to change after a divorce. This can be because of changes in the child’s age, medical, or educational needs. If your child’s needs have changed, you may need to modify your divorce agreement.

Changing your divorce settlement agreement in Georgia can be complicated. That is why you need the aid of knowledgeable divorce lawyers in Paulding County, GA.

Do You Need To Change Your Divorce Settlement Agreement Georgia?

Many factors are involved in why people change their divorce settlement agreement in Georgia. Some of these reasons include remarriage, changes in income, or custody arrangements. If you consider changing your divorce arrangement, speaking with reputable Paulding County divorce lawyers is important. William R. Pike Law LLC is a divorce lawyer who can help change your divorce arrangements. Set your appointment now for a consultation.


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