Sunday, June 28, 2009

I travel a lot for business. How will this impact a court’s custody decision?
Georgia courts base custody decisions on the best interests of the child. Therefore, any factor that affects the child’s best interest, including a parent’s travel schedule, will play a role in that decision. Such factors can include the child’s age and the relationship the child has with each parent. The impact of the travel will vary depending on the child’s best interests and the amount and predictability of the travel. It is highly unlikely that a parent that travels more than one-half of the time would have primary custody.

If the parent travels about one-half of the time, the court would look to other best-interests factors to determine whether a joint custody schedule would be appropriate. If a parent travels a few days per month, he or she may still be granted primary custody depending on other best-interests factors. If a parent’s travel schedule is unpredictable, the parent must be creative in proposing a schedule to the court that allows for some flexibility in the custodial schedule, as a rigid schedule could cause that parent to miss out on parenting time. Allowances for make-up parenting time would be helpful in this situation and should be requested.

O.C.G.A. § 19-9-3(a)(2); Bodne v. Bodne, 277 Ga. 445 (2003).

Written by Stern & Edlin Lawyer, Carla Schiff.
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Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Shiel Edlin Quoted by
Shiel Edlin of Stern & Edlin Family Law, is quoted in an article about a legal case that "Could Set Precedent". To read the article, click here.

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Monday, June 15, 2009

Does my child get to decide where he lives once he turns 14?
The short answer is no, not exactly.

Under the old law, if a 14 year old signed what’s called an election, the court’s hands were tied unless the other parent could show that the selected parent could not meet the child’s basic needs such as food, shelter and access to school. On January 1, 2008, the law changed. Now, if a 14 year old selects to live with a parent, the court assumes that that is in the child’s best interests unless the other parent can show that it is against the child's best interests. In other words, under the new law, a 14-year-old child’s selection is not as powerful as it once was.

For children that are between the ages of 11 and 13, although the court is required to take their desires into account, ultimately the court has to decide what is in the child’s best interests without favoring the parent that was selected by the child. In addition, unlike with 14 year olds, a parent wanting custody of child between 11 and 13 that has selected to live with them must show the court that something else has changed about the child’s situation other than the child’s desire alone. Otherwise, the selection of an 11 to 13 year old child alone will not get you in the courthouse door.

O.C.G.A. § 19-9-3(a)(6).

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Tuesday, June 9, 2009 Opens
Stern & Edlin Family Law proudly announces a brand new website,

The new website acts to help and inform perspective clients. Inquirers can now contact the recognized legal team at Stern & Edlin through a website based form as well as a direct land line. In the future, articles and informative details about family law issues concerning divorce, alimony and more will be released.

Click here to learn more about the Stern & Edlin Family Law firm.


Monday, June 1, 2009

Super Lawyers Magazine Recognizes Shiel Edlin
For the sixth year in a row, Super Lawyers Magazine recognized and profiled Shiel Edlin.

Stern and Edlin partner, Shiel Edlin, was chosen after an intensive selection process. Shiel Edlin's Super Lawyer profile on the magazine's website features a unique record of consistent performance. Shiel Edlin has been recognized by Super Lawyer every year since 2004.

Super Lawyers magazine names attorneys in each state who received the highest point totals, as chosen by their peers and through the independent research of Law & Politics. Super Lawyers content appears in top city and regional publications including Atlanta magazine.

To see Super Lawyer's profile of Shiel Edlin, click here. For a profile of Shiel Edlin by Ten Leaders, click here.
Click here to learn more about the Stern & Edlin Family Law firm.