Ohio fathers who are pursuing custody of their children may be interested to hear that many states are no longer automatically giving the mother guardianship after a divorce or separation. Family courts take into consideration a number of factors pertaining to the mother and the father as they determine the best interests of a child in a child custody case. One father in another state appealed after the department of child services there challenged a child custody placement in his favor.

DCS had been working with the mother and her boyfriend on an agreement concerning her three children, all under 5 years old. There had been suspicion of substance abuse that garnered the attention of the DCS, ultimately requiring treatment ordered by the court. Only months later, an unannounced visit by police revealed the children had been left alone by the mother. The father had a stable job with a steady income, and the children were placed in his care.

Two months later the court determined the three kids were adjudicated children in need of services to keep them from being returned to the mother’s custody. Even though a DCS caseworker deemed the placement with the father to be acceptable, the court would not take that into consideration and decided instead that the father needed parenting education. Once the father was awarded custody of the children in a separate legal proceeding, DCS sought to have the ruling overturned. An appellate court subsequently ruled the father was more than adequately meeting the needs of his children.

Child custody cases can be complicated. It can be overwhelming to meet all the requirements set by the court while petitioning for custody. An experienced Ohio attorney can ensure a client has all needed information when presenting a case before a judge.