Making You Whole Again

Compassionate Advocacy For Your Parental Rights

A parent-child relationship should not deteriorate just because a marriage or relationship comes to an end. At the law firm of Donna Ambler Davis, PC, our legal team brings compassion, creativity, and strategy to strengthening your relationships with your children after divorce or separation. Our attorneys draw on decades of wisdom and experience to resolve difficult custody disagreements and related parenting issues. We will stand up for your children’s best interests while guiding you to long-term practical and healthy solutions.

Child Custody And Visitation: Maintaining Your Family Bonds

In North Carolina, the best interest of the minor child is the paramount consideration in determining custody. Sometimes parents cannot agree about legal and physical custody arrangements for their children. We are firm believers in exploring every avenue available, especially when children are involved. Settlement agreements that parents can establish, as opposed to court-ordered custody, tend to fare better in the long run for both the parents and their children. Sometimes, however, these out-of-court agreements are not always possible. This is especially true when one party is unable to compromise. When this is the case, and litigation is necessary, we vigorously represent your position in court for the best interest of the children.

Look to the law office of Donna Ambler Davis, PC, for help with matters such as:

  • Child custody and division of parenting time
  • Modification of child custody or visitation
  • A written parenting plan to govern shared responsibilities and decision-making authority
  • Paternity and parental rights
  • Relocation of either parent
  • Interference with custody rights
  • Termination of parental rights

Child Support: Meeting Your Child’s Future Needs

Under North Carolina law, both parents are responsible for the financial support of their children. Specifically, under North Carolina General Statute §50-13.4, a court shall determine the amount of each party’s child support obligation by applying the presumptive Child Support Guidelines. ( Payments ordered for the support of a minor child shall be in such an amount as to meet the reasonable needs of the child for health, education and maintenance, having due regard to the estates, earnings, conditions, accustomed standard of living of the child (or children) and the parties, the child care and contributions of each party, and other factors of a particular case.

Family Law Attorneys You Can Trust

At Donna Ambler Davis, PC, we don’t just want to represent you in your child custody, visitation or support case. We also want to ensure that you know exactly what’s happening during these legal procedures.

Here are some frequently asked questions that you may have, which we have answers for:

What factors do courts consider when determining child custody?

North Carolina courts consider a number of factors to determine custody arrangements that are in the best interests of the child. These include the child’s age, the ability of each parent to provide a stable home environment, the child’s relationship with each parent, the parents’ willingness to cooperate, any history of domestic violence or substance abuse and the child’s own preferences if they are of sufficient age and maturity.

What is the difference between legal custody and physical custody?

Legal custody means the right of a parent to make major decisions about how their child is raised, such as education, health care and even religion. Meanwhile, physical custody determines where the child will reside and which parent will be responsible for daily care. Joint legal custody allows both parents to share decision-making, while sole legal custody gives one parent the final say. Similarly, joint physical custody means the child’s time is divided between both parents’ homes, while sole physical custody means the child lives primarily with one parent.

How is child custody modified after the initial order is set?

Child custody orders can be modified if there has been a substantial change in circumstances after the original order. This could include a parent’s relocation, a change in employment or financial situation, or evidence that the existing arrangement is no longer in the child’s best interests. The parent seeking modification must demonstrate a legitimate reason for the change.

Can grandparents or other relatives seek custody or visitation rights?

Grandparents or other close relatives may be able to petition the court for custody or visitation rights with a child. This arrangement is considered if the parents are unable to care for the child due to circumstances such as abandonment, abuse or neglect. Much like a regular custody or visitation order, the court will evaluate whether granting custody or visitation to the relative is in the child’s best interests.

How does joint custody work if parents live in different cities or states?

When parents with joint custody live in different cities or states, a detailed parenting plan is crucial. This plan should outline the schedule for the child’s time with each parent, transportation arrangements, decision-making procedures for important issues and provisions for handling future relocation by either parent. Frequent communication and flexibility from both parents are essential to making a long-distance joint custody arrangement work successfully in the best interests of the child.

Need Compassionate Legal Guidance? Contact Us Today.

Matters of child custody, visitation and support issues are complicated, and they’re the last things you should be handling on your own. Our experienced family law attorneys at Donna Ambler Davis, PC, are here to provide the caring counsel and strong advocacy you need during this challenging time. We will fight to protect your parent-child relationships while pursuing fair and practical solutions tailored to your unique family situation.

Contact us today by calling 919-933-0950 or completing our online form to schedule a confidential consultation. We serve families throughout the Orange County area and are committed to helping you and your children move forward in a positive direction.