Representing Children

Maryland Child Custody – What ARE the Best Interests of the Child?

Maryland Child Custody – What ARE the Best Interests of the Child?

When it comes to where a child of separated parents lives, the child's schedule for spending time with each parent, and decision-making about a child, the guiding principle is the child's best interests. In settlement, this means the parents put the child's interests...

Joint Custody Presumption v. Shared Parenting Advocacy

Joint Custody Presumption v. Shared Parenting Advocacy

A December 11, 2017 Washington Post article, "More than 20 states in 2017 considered laws to promote shared custody of children after divorce", states:  "Now lawmakers are accelerating this trend toward co-parenting, with legislatures in more than 20 states this...

Maryland Child Custody – Attorney Representation of Children

Maryland Child Custody – Attorney Representation of Children

Maryland recognizes three types of attorneys who can be appointed to represent children in contested custody, access/visitation/parenting time, and domestic violence cases.  All of these roles require that the attorney be appointed by court order to represent the...

At What Age Can A Child Choose With Which Parent to Live?

At What Age Can A Child Choose With Which Parent to Live?

In short, at no age does a child in Maryland get to choose to live with a parent. As long as a child is under the age of 18, a child does not have a legal right to decide where or with whom he or she will live. A few laws give children rights at certain ages, but...

What is Child Custody?

What is Child Custody?

In Maryland, child custody has two main parts:  physical custody and legal custody. Physical custody involves where a child lives, when a child spends time with each parent, and any conditions.  Physical custody is also called residential custody or...

Parents, Children & Reunification

Parents, Children & Reunification

Last week, I participated in a fascinating, multidisciplinary roundtable discussion about the challenges professionals face in reunification cases. Specifically, when a parent wishes to establish a parent-child relationship when there is none and when a child refuses...

What is an Emergency?

What is an Emergency?

Family clients have many urgent concerns because family cases are complicated. But is every urgent issue an emergency in the Court's eyes? Short answer: No. What is an emergency depends both upon the Circuit Court's case management plan and the Judge hearing the...