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Choice of the Child

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TIBY2KJD

Guest
Georgia.
My 15 y/o son lives with my ex wife in Mississippi. We had agreed that in December he would come to live with me and child support would be reduced (I have 2 other children) accordingly.

My son found an email his mother had written saying that she was "ready to wash her hands of him" and that if she "fell off the face of the earth he would'nt even care enough to look back". Reading this, my son was distraught, forwarded the email to me, and I confronted my ex. She accused my son of spying on her and that I was his accomplice, restricted him from all priveledges, and confined him to his room. She is now refusing to allow him to call me because he is becoming a liar and a cheat..."just like your father".

I have asked her to let him to move in with me now, she refuses and said that the only way I will get him now is if it goes to court. She refuses to acknowledge his feelings what so ever and is being her usual vindictive self.

Here's the question: Is it legal, since the age of choice in MS is 12 and GA is 14, for him to just come live with me?

Thanks for any help you may be able to offer.
 


stealth2

Under the Radar Member
It was my understanding that in GA the age of choice was 16 - someone here posted that not long ago.

Otherwise - why was your son in his mother's email?
 
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lcollins

Guest
In GA, the age at which the courts take the child's wishes into consideration is 11. You will have to have the courts change the order whether the mom is agreeable or not. Don't do so on a verbal agreement, or you could get in trouble later. You will also need to address the child support issue in court.
 

stealth2

Under the Radar Member
lcollins.... someone posted not long ago that GA law requires the judge to place the child with the parent of his/her choice as long as the parent is not deemed unfit.... do you know anything about that? Just curious.

That is - when the child is 16.
 

Whyte Noise

Senior Member
Momma_tiger

It was me that posted that on another Forum in here. And the age is 14, not 16. :)

O.C.G.A. 19-9-3

(4) In all custody cases in which the child has reached the age of
14 years, the child shall have the right to select the parent with
whom he or she desires to live. The child's selection shall be
controlling unless the parent so selected is determined not to be
a fit and proper person to have the custody of the child.
(4.1) In all custody cases in which the child has reached the age
of at least 11 but not 14 years, the court shall consider the
desires and educational needs of the child in determining which
parent shall have custody. The child's selection shall not be
controlling. The best interests of the child standard shall
apply.


11 to make their wishes know, but they can't decide. 14 to have the controlling decision. However, our poster asked if since the age was 12 and 14 to choose, can the child just come live with him.....

Uhmmmmm..... NO. Custody has to be changed, and signed by a judge.
 
T

TIBY2KJD

Guest
Thanks for all the information.
My ex wife uses one logon for the entire house. My son was going through old emails cleaning out the files and found the email she had written.

So, if I'm understanding what is being said I must go through the court to amend my divorce decree. I was advised, whether properly or not, that a notorized affadavit from me saying that I accept custody and a newly agreed amount of child support was all I had to do. Same for my ex wife.

My main concern here is getting my son away from this woman before she does anymore damage to his self worth.

Any suggestions on how I can accomplish this without him being with me right now? Obviously it's going to take some time if I have to go through the court system.
 
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lcollins

Guest
You need to take it up in court, not a notarized document.

Also like to mention there is a bill pending to amend the wording of that statute listed a few posts up. They are changing it from "controlling" to "taken into consideration".

Save the email your son sent, you may could use it, if the mother continues to be negative about the child's wish to live with you.
 
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ladynred_32539

Guest
I'm not sure what the age in GA is, however, I do know the age in Florida is 12. HOWEVER, it is up to the judges discretion as to if he will hear the child. So, don't let the age law fool you. The judge has the final decsision in this. Also, the parent for which the child resides with can deny allowing this child to go into court or infront of a judge. I know, it happened to me years ago. So, you would be best to find a GOOD lawyer and take it from there.
Good Luck!!!
 

Whyte Noise

Senior Member
Another thing to consider is which state has jurisdiction to issue the modification. Was the original order issued in Georgia or Mississippi? That's where you would have to file, and whose laws and statutes you'd have to follow.

Georgia is one of the worst states to file anything in. CPS, CSE, CS guidelnes, custody issues.... there's horror stories in almost every county there. I can tell you of things that went on in MY county alone, Dougherty, that would make you sick to your stomach. Plus the lawmakers seem to have their heads stuck up their butts in Atlanta. CS guidelines declared unconstitutional, children being killed by their own parents when DFACS knew what was going on.... it's bad. Luckily, my ex and myself agreed to all of our issues and settled them between us before filing and I didn't have to go thru that fiasco of a court system there.
 

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