Happy family having fun time together at home

Child custody in Georgia is decided during a divorce or after paternity/legitimation has been established. It’s wise to have an experienced family law attorney on your side to help you pursue the best possible result! Discover the answers to frequently asked questions about child custody in Georgia:

What are the different types of child custody?

There are two types of child custody in Georgia: physical and legal.

Physical custody refers to which parent the child lives with primarily. This parent is considered the primary physical custodian, and the other parent is considered the secondary physical custodian. A parenting agreement is created that outlines when the child will stay at each parent’s home during normal weeks of the year and holidays.

Legal custody refers to the parent who has legal authority to make decisions for the child regarding important topics, such as:

  • Discipline
  • Education
  • Extracurricular activities
  • Medical
  • Religious

Will I share responsibilities with my ex?

Sharing a child’s upbringing depends on whether your physical and legal custody is considered joint or sole. Joint custody means that both parties should make decisions together regarding the child’s best interests (examples listed above). The court appoints one parent as the final decision maker if the two parties cannot come to an agreement.

Sole physical or legal custody is not as common in Georgia; however, it is mandated if one parent is not fit to care for the child due to abuse, mental illness, or other personal issues. If the court deems it appropriate, the parent who is struggling with issues may have supervised visitation rights.

Will I owe child support if my ex and I have joint child custody?

Child support is determined based on a number of factors. You may not pay a significant amount if you and your ex share equal parenting time and have roughly the same income. To learn more about child support in Georgia, check out one of our latest blogs where we answered the questions:

  • How is child support in Georgia decided?
  • Can child support in Georgia be modified?
  • What if my ex refuses to pay child support?
  • If my child comes to live with me, do I still have to pay child support in Georgia?