Legal Custody and Physical Placement of Minors

Legal Custody and Physical Placement Orders:

1. Have your legal custody and physical placement arrangements been limited or modified in a manner that you do not approve of? In Wisconsin, decisions regarding the legal custody and physical placement are initially based upon what the Court finds to be in the best interest of the minor children. The process that leads to an initial decision on legal custody and physical placement is fairly straight forward. If the parties cannot agree amongst themselves as to the conditions of legal custody and/or the schedule for physical placement, the Courtwill refer the parties to mediation. In Wisconsin, that mediation is held between a trained legal professional or social service professional and the parties only. This gives the parties an opportunity to informally discuss issues regarding legal custody and a schedule for physical placement. If an agreement is reached in mediation, the Mediator will write up the agreement. The parties will sign the agreement, if the parties are represented by an attorney, that attorney will review and approve of the document, the document then gets sent to the Court for final approval. If an agreement cannot be reached at mediation, then the Court will appoint a Guardian ad Litem. That Guardian ad Litem is typically a local lawyer who has been trained in the field of family law. That lawyer’s primary duty is to investigate. That lawyer will investigate by speaking to the parents, the children, and references of each parent and may speak to those adults involved in the child’s life, including, but not limited to, the therapists, social workers, physicians, mentors, and the like.

If your legal custody rights or placement rights have been modified, then you have gone through this process. In a Court proceeding, the Court will have clearly told you the reasons why your legal custody or placement rights have been modified. While it is difficult to return to court to again modify legal custody or physical placement rights, a lawyer trained in the field of family law can, in certain circumstances, prevail and begin to provide you the legal custody rights and physical placement schedule that is more to your liking.

Financial Obligations:

2. Please understand that your child support obligation is based on financial

circumstances and not based on whether or not you see your children, even if your

former spouse is interfering with your placement schedule. If you withhold child

support to get even with a present or former spouse’s interference with your

placement rights, you will come out on the losing end of that battle. The Court

will enforce child support obligations even though you may not be happy with

your physical placement rights.

What a Family Law Attorney Can Do for You:

3. The lawyers at Darrow & Dietrich, S.C. are extremely qualified and experienced

in the field of family law. Each and every day we go to court on issues regarding

legal custody, physical placement, and the establishment of child support. We

would be glad to meet with you, identify the factors that are utilized by the Court

in making decision in family law cases, and most importantly, we are ready,

willing and able to go to court with you fully prepared to protect your rights. If

you would like to meet with us for a free consultation, please let us know. Our

telephone number is: 920-451-6100.