Category: Family Law

How Can I Get Divorced In Mississippi?

This is a favorite question of many clients and perspective clients. I usually begin with telling people that there is an easy way and a hard way. Unfortunately, the easy way requires both the Husband and the Wife (or the wife / wife and/or husband / husband) to agree upon the dissolution of their marriage. [..]

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Third Party Custody

How can a person, who is not a natural parent, obtain custody of a child?  A natural parent has a presumption under the law that the best interest of the child is for the child to be in the custody of a natural parent over all other persons.  In order for a third person to [..]

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How can parental rights be terminated?

This year brought changes by way of statute to termination of parental rights (TPR) in response to the Mississippi Supreme Court’s holding in Chism v. Bright, 152 So.3d 318 (Miss. 2014).   In Chism, the father brought  a contempt action to restore visitation with his son.  The mother counterclaimed seeking termination of parental rights.  The Chancellor (trial [..]

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What is a Guardian Ad Litem?

I’m often asked about Guardian ad Litems and their role in Chancery Court custody cases.  The last two words, “ad Litem”, are roughly translated from Latin to mean for the purposes of this litigation.  A Guardian ad Litem (GAL)usually has a limited purpose in divorce and custody cases often to represent a minor child or [..]

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How can Custody be modified?

Clients often inquire as to how they can re-gain custody of a child or children subsequent to a divorce or previous custody order. Many people share a common misconception that once a child is twelve (12)years old he or she can choose which parent the child wishes to live with regardless of a Court Order. [..]

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Who has Custody without a Court Order? Part 3 (Final)

The legislature and the Supreme Court in Mississippi have made it clear that both parents are equally entitled to custody of their children.  I often get frantic phone calls, usually at the beginning of a weekend – Fridays – approximately 6:00 p.m.  The client is outraged that the other parent has the child, no custody [..]

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Who has Custody without a Court Order? Part 1

This is probably the most commonly asked question in domestic relations cases. Who has custody before we get to Court?  Can she take the child from me and keep the child away from me?  Can I get the child back and not let her see the child?  The answer is as clear as mud. Deborah [..]

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