What is a Guardian ad Litem?
A Guardian ad Litem is a person, typically an attorney, that is appointed by the courts to represent a child in a custody case. Both parents may or may not have attorneys, and they may get caught up in their own interests, resulting in the child’s needs getting lost in the shuffle. The Guardian ad Litem doesn’t represent either parent and is solely there to determine what is best for the child.
Why have one?
The parents’ attorneys represent the parents and their interests, desires, and demands. They must fight for what their client wants. A Guardian ad Litem is entirely on the child’s side. They can look at the background of the case, living conditions, and family relationships the child has with each parent and other relatives. They can interview anyone, by phone or in person, and make home visits to properly assess the child’s situation.
Armed with all this information, the Guardian ad Litem can then make a recommendation on what they think is best for the child in terms of custody, visitation, and/or placement of the child. The parents don’t have to accept the recommendation, but the judge will make a final decision.
If the parents in a child custody case are unable to come to an agreement, a Guardian ad Litem can be a good way to try to find a solution. Our local South Carolina family law attorney can be an ideal Guardian ad Litem as she understands state laws regarding child custody and visitation; she can ensure her recommendation represents the child’s best interests while remaining in line with state laws.
Gentry Law Firm can assist you with your child custody case. Attorney Meagan Gentry has experience with all the aspects of these cases and is ready to fight for you and your rights. Contact us today to discuss your case.