How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Joseph Your Own Question

Joseph
Joseph, Family Law Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 7279
Experience:  I have over a decade of experience as a Family Law litigator
18539850
Type Your Family Law Question Here...
Joseph is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Im writing to try to help a friend who is very upset about

Resolved Question:

I'm writing to try to help a friend who is very upset about her situation between her ex-husband and her daughter. Her now 15-year-old daughter decided more than a year ago to live with her father who is remarried and has two step daughters, 15 and 17. My friend totally understood why her daughter would want to live with her father.

Over three months ago her ex-husband dropped the daughter back at her place and said he was done with her and that my friend could have her back. My friend works full-time and was having to drive an extra two hours a day to take her daughter back and forth to school (she was in school in a different county). Her ex-husband gave her no money during those three months to compensate for her having to take care of her daughter. I should also mention that the father agreed to let the daughter stay with him on Thurs nights only because my friend had to be at work at 7 a.m. on Fridays and could not take her daughter to school. Besides that the father did not see his daughter but once during a family wedding in a three month period.

Recently my friend filed to get custody back. She recently got a new job in a new city about an hour from her ex-husband. Her daughter really wants to move with her Mom as she lives in a school district that is getting a brand new high school and she really wants to be back with her Mom.

Since living with her father, the daughter has gone from a straight A private school student to a B-C student at a county high school. She has also had to start seeing psychologist.

Since filing for custody the father has started back pedaling and acting like he just gave the daughter to the mother while she was going through a tough time. He made no effort to see his daughter for three months except for Thursday night because it was a necessity for her to get to school and because of a family wedding.

My friend has tried to tell her ex-husband that she will take her daughter back with no child support. The father told his daughter, "you can live with your mother but only if she doesn't ask for child support." But now that she has a new job making good money, my friend thinks he will try to keep the daughter and ask her for child support.

This is in the state of Georgia. What are my friend's chances in court? Can the daughter change her mind about where she wants to live? I read where the child can not change their mind for two years?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Joseph replied 1 year ago.

It's always difficult to predict what a judge might do in any particular situation. With that caveat, I would suggest that your friend has a good case. I say this as a custody modification is typically based on a substantial change in circumstances. Here, the father had basically given the child to the mother, this is clearly a change in circumstances.

.

The key here will likely be in whether your friend can prove that she has been solely responsible for the child for the past few months. If she can do that, my speculation is that she will prevail. As to proof, she could certainly testify as to the arrangement and, if she is so inclined, she could request that the child come to court to testify as well.

.

As to the child's desires, she is certainly old enough to express her preference. In general, a child should be at least twelve years of age before being brought to court. As this child is fifteen, she is old enough to provide her opinion and that opinion will certainly be considered by the judge.

.
I hope you found my answer helpful. If so, please click on "OK", "Good" or "Excellent" service. This is necessary for me to be paid for my work and so that I can get credit for assisting you. Even if you are a subscription member, you will need to click on one of the positive indicators. Your question will not close, and you will still have the opportunity to follow-up if needed.
.
If you are not yet satisfied with my answer, please do not yet rate my service. Instead, please click on the "Reply to Expert" and let me know what else I can do for you. Please only rate my answer when you are fully satisfied.
.
Also, several customers have asked how they may direct a question to me in particular. If you specifically want me to assist you in your legal matter, just put "FOR JOSEPH" in the subject line and I will gladly pick up the question as soon as I am on-line.
.
Leaving a bonus is not required but doing so is certainly appreciated! Thank you and good luck.

Joseph, Family Law Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 7279
Experience: I have over a decade of experience as a Family Law litigator
Joseph and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Not only did he answer my Michigan divorce question but was also able to help me out with it, too. I have since won my legal case on this matter and thank you so much for it. Lee Michigan
< Last | Next >
  • Not only did he answer my Michigan divorce question but was also able to help me out with it, too. I have since won my legal case on this matter and thank you so much for it. Lee Michigan
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
  • My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer. Eric Redwood City, CA
  • I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight. Michael Wichita, KS
  • PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent. Three H. Houston, TX
  • Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!! Elaine Atlanta, GA
  • It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem. Tony Apopka, FL
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Ely

    Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    8085
    Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RA/ratioscripta/2012-6-13_2955_foto3.64x64.jpg Ely's Avatar

    Ely

    Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    8085
    Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/LA/LawTalk/2012-6-6_17379_LawTalk.64x64.JPG LawTalk's Avatar

    LawTalk

    Attorney and Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    6424
    27+ years legal experience. I remain current in Family Law through regular continuing education.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/FL/FLAandNYLawyer/2012-1-27_14349_3Fotolia25855429M.64x64.jpg FiveStarLaw's Avatar

    FiveStarLaw

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    6336
    25 years of experience helping people like you.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/dkaplun/2009-05-17_173121_headshot_1_2.jpg Dimitry K., Esq.'s Avatar

    Dimitry K., Esq.

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    5987
    I provide family and divorce law advice to my clients in my firm.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/MU/multistatelaw/2011-11-27_173951_Tinaglamourshotworkglow102011.64x64.jpg Tina's Avatar

    Tina

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    5773
    JD, 15 years legal experience including family law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BrianTMayer/2010-01-06_200119_BM.jpg Brandon M.'s Avatar

    Brandon M.

    Family Law Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    3810
    Attorney experienced in all aspects of family law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/TU/TUSA/2012-6-6_55219_test.64x64.png Thoreau (T-USA)'s Avatar

    Thoreau (T-USA)

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    2634
    Attorney