Articles Posted in Custody

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BOYLES V. ORRELL, 2022-NCCOA-916 (unpublished).

Facts: Mother and Father married in 2014 and separated about four months later. The couple had a daughter together, who is eight years old. The parties entered into a consent custody order and the mother had primary physical custody.

In March of 2020, the trial court entered a subsequent consent child custody order where it was ordered that neither parent would abuse alcohol or use illegal drugs, or abuse prescription drugs while with the minor child. It also allowed either party to request up to four random drug tests which would have to be performed within 24 hours. Continue reading →

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Custody cases have different terms that can be difficult to understand. Most people think of custody as the right to parent their children. After all, what else is there? It turns out it isn’t that simple. A custody order will address both legal and physical custody. Continue reading →

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Ouléye Ndoye, former wife of Georgia Democratic Senator Raphael Warnock, is demanding he submit to questioning as their child custody battle continues.  Ndoye’s accusations say Warnock has failed to render proper custody of the parties’ minor children during his days of their agreed parenting schedule.  Warnock’s work-related obligations have resulted in extended periods of travel for Warnock, leaving him unavailable during his agreed custodial time.  The parties’ parenting schedule awarded Warnock two weekdays per week, which he is no longer able to fulfill.

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In October 2022, the North Carolina Court of Appeals addressed whether a parent who hasn’t had contact with their child because the child had been actively removed and hidden from them still has their constitutional right to parent their child. Continue reading →

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Today, we are taking a look at the Indian[1] Child Welfare Act (ICWA), a federal law managed by the US Bureau of Indian Affairs. The ICWA was passed in 1978 to counteract the unfair treatment of Indigenous children in state and foster care. The US has a nasty history of forced assimilation programs where Indigenous children were stolen from their families and moved to boarding schools, where they were forced to abandon their Indigenous culture and heritage. Even though these programs have ended, Indigenous families still face cultural ignorance and bias in the foster care system. In a 2013 study, the percentage of children in foster care who were Indigenous was 2.5 times their percentage in the overall population. In some states, that number was up to 14.8 times. The ICWA helps to protect these children, their families, and the Indigenous Tribes in the United States. Continue reading →

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As many families gear up for Halloween with their children, religious concerns about the holiday have led to an increase in “Fall Festivals” or “Trunk or Treats” to provide more religious families with an alternative to a traditional celebration full of ghosts and ghouls. During this time of year, religious tensions about acceptable activities for kids can come up between divorced parents with different religious beliefs. What is a parent to do when they can’t agree with their ex about their child’s religion? Continue reading →

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Divorce is difficult, and even more so with children involved. It can be especially difficult when the children have unique needs. The stresses of divorce can have an increased impact on these children, and their special needs can have a major impact on custody and child support. As a parent, you are in the best position to know what your child needs, and it is your job to show the court what those needs are and to be honest with yourself about your ability to meet those needs. Continue reading →

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How often have you heard someone claim their grandmother was Native American? What about Italian? More people around the world claim to be Irish than there are people in all of Ireland! The lure of knowing where you come from has led to an explosion in commercial testing services like 23 & Me. As technology has advanced and databases of genetic profiles have grown, so has the information that those commercial genetic tests can provide. This includes health information and wide nets of genetic relatives you may have never known about. Everyone is familiar with genetic testing in custody and child support cases, but learning one’s genetic parentage can lead to a host of issues beyond custody and child support. Continue reading →

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For a non-legal parental figure in North Carolina, custody of a child is a complicated issue. North Carolina doesn’t have statutes that specifically address custody for a non-related, non-adoptive parental figure, so the courts have to rely on case law – cases that have been decided and explained by the Court of Appeals or the NC Supreme Court – to determine what the rules actually are for granting custody to a third party, such as a non-legal parent. Continue reading →

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As in any traditional family, no one goes into a family with three or more parents expecting it to fall apart but, like any traditional family, separation is always a possibility down the line. For those persons who live in a state that doesn’t allow them to become a legal parent to their child, such as in North Carolina, there are steps that a non-legal parent should take to help protect their custody rights should the worst happen. Continue reading →