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South Carolina Child Custody Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for South Carolina on
Q: We have joint custody, rotating every Friday. Do I have to let the mother call all the time during my week?

The Custody is joint switching on Fridays and I (Father) have primary placement. This wouldn't be a problem but the mother tends to be harassing me about whatever petty detail she can. And I feel like she is trying to turn my children against me.

Megan Hunt Dell
Megan Hunt Dell answered on Aug 26, 2021

Typically, South Carolina court orders for joint custody include provisions detailing each parent's rights to communicate with the child while he/she is in the care of the other parent. If you are not sure how to interpret the terms of your Order, the best course of action is to schedule a... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody, Domestic Violence, Family Law and Immigration Law for South Carolina on
Q: I’m an undocumented grandparent seeking custody of my two grandchildren who are now in DSS foster care after abuse by…

…after abuse by their parents. What kin rights do my husband and I have and what is the process for gaining custody?

Agnes Jury
Agnes Jury answered on Jun 2, 2021

This is a family law question, not immigration. Your immigration status may of some importance in the custody matter but that is something the family law attorney needs to address. Best wishes!

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption, Child Custody and Family Law for South Carolina on
Q: Can I possibly takeover custody of a baby that dss placed with his aunt?

He was born addicted to cocaine. Dss placed him with his aunt . I am not a blood relative. But my kids are. So dss placed him with her but I have him 6 nights a week and she has him 1. When thwy went to court back in Jan, his guardian ad litem asked the judge to place him with me. But instead they... Read more »

Megan Hunt Dell
Megan Hunt Dell answered on May 7, 2021

Under South Carolina law, when children are removed from a home, there is an order of preference for where the children should be placed (with family or not). If you wish to seek custody of this child, you should seek the advice of a lawyer experienced with DSS cases and third-party custody claims.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody and Child Support for South Carolina on
Q: I'm unwed with a child and would like to know what my legal right are with my child? father not pay chd sup. no vistati

Father not paying child support or rarely see his child. Father residence is in Georgia

Megan Hunt Dell
Megan Hunt Dell answered on May 7, 2021

In South Carolina, when a child is born to unmarried parents, the mother is the child's sole custodian. Paternity and child support can be established through the DSS child support process. Information on how to apply for child support through DSS is available here:... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Divorce, Immigration Law, Child Custody and Child Support for South Carolina on
Q: I lived under common law for 17 years, separated 10 months ago, both undocumented, have a child. Can file for divorce?

What are the risks ? Can I ask for child support and alimony? There’s a new girlfriend in the picture who he’s planning to marry in the future since she’s a citizen. We have a business and properties together. If I can’t file for divorce what options do I have? Thank you!

Hector E. Quiroga
Hector E. Quiroga answered on Apr 12, 2021

The fact that you are undocumented should have no bearing on your ability to get divorced. The fact that your marriage is common law might have some bearing on your ability to get a divorce, but that is a question for an attorney with family law experience in your state.

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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for South Carolina on
Q: My Step daughters mom keeps threatening to just keep her every time she gets mad about something. Can she do that?

She's been Living with us for over 5 Years. She has not supported her financially at all. Not involved in school, doctors or anything important to the the child's well being. I have been more her mother then her biological one. Can she do really just do that? She has never been stable... Read more »

Ryan D Templeton
Ryan D Templeton answered on Oct 5, 2020

You will need to contact a Family Court attorney in your area. This is a very complicated area of the law and really depends on what the current custody agreement/order says. If she is violating a custody order there is an enforcement mechanism that may be of assistance.

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce, Family Law, Child Custody and Child Support for South Carolina on
Q: DSS removed my child due to a positive drug screen that is not accurate due to a medication I'm prescribed

I'm prescribed Adderall and have been in a treatment program for many years during which all my drug screens have always came back clean. I have documentation of this as well. They have put my child in my soon to be ex's care who will not allow me to see her. The same situation happened... Read more »

Cheryl Ann Truesdale
Cheryl Ann Truesdale answered on May 4, 2020

What you haven't mentioned is if you've provided a statement from your doctor confirming that you are prescribed for Adderall.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for South Carolina on
Q: Back in 2012 i signed a document between me and my parents for them to have temporary custody of my son and had it

Notarized, this was not done through the court system at all, my son has been living with me since 2014 i asked them multiple times to sign him back over but they never would now that i have chosen to move out of state the have decided to pull the temporary customer agreement back out an say that i... Read more »

Cheryl Ann Truesdale
Cheryl Ann Truesdale answered on Apr 20, 2020

Although your question doesn't state where the agreement was entered into, I assume that it was done in South Carolina. Because your agreement was never court approved, it is not enforceable as a custody order. It would merely convey to your parents the authority to obtain medical care for... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for South Carolina on
Q: I have joint custody with my ex husband. Our daughter is fifteen and would like to live with me now.

Do I need to go back to court or is she old enough to decide?

Taylor Silver
Taylor Silver answered on Apr 13, 2020

Your previous Court Order controls. Changing court-ordered custody and visitation first requires a showing of a substantial and material change in circumstances followed by a best interest of the child analysis. It is complicated and you will very likely need an attorney.

I would start by...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption and Child Custody for South Carolina on
Q: My daughters paternal grandmother has primary custody and I get her every weekend father in jail signed away rights gma

Want to adopt but I no longer agree. What can happen if she tries and I object and when can I request a change of custody

Ryan D Templeton
Ryan D Templeton answered on Apr 7, 2020

If there is a substantial change in circumstance you can always request a change in custody. It would be a good idea to reach out to a family law attorney in your area that can advise you on the best course of action. If you are served with any paperwork regarding the child you need to make sure to... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for South Carolina on
Q: Have my 1st court hearing for child custody on Tuesday March 3rd would like to speak to lawyer for legal advice.

Found out ex wife has been living in home with my son for over a year with no electricity or hot water, their was no custody agreement in place so I got my son out of that situation put him with me and enrolled him in school at the beginning of February and got him a drs appointment done, check up... Read more »

Ryan D Templeton
Ryan D Templeton answered on Feb 27, 2020

You need to reach out to an attorney in the county where the temporary hearing is scheduled immediately so that they can be ready for a hearing next week!

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for South Carolina on
Q: Can my daughters father stop me from going to open school performances?

I recently got a drug charge and DSS is involved I havent gone to court for it yet and I havent gotten any papers from DSS regarding anything. My daughter had a school performance and it was in the school gym

Ryan D Templeton
Ryan D Templeton answered on Feb 27, 2020

Absent a court order or voluntary safety plan in place you can go to a public performance at your child’s school.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Adoption and Child Custody for South Carolina on
Q: I am wondering if my stepdad can adopt me if my biological dad's rights have been terminated due to abuse?

My biological dad's rights were terminated when I was 4 due to physically and sexually abusing me and my mother. I am now 16 and have been living with my mom and stepdad since I was 5. I'm trying to get adopted by my stepdad but am not sure if I need my birth father's consent, as he... Read more »

Ryan D Templeton
Ryan D Templeton answered on Feb 15, 2020

Since you are under the age of 18 your mother and stepfather would have to file to do all of this. Assuming your biological father’s parental rights have been terminated you would not need his consent either for adoption or for a name change. I would recommend you reach out to an attorney near... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody, Child Support and Juvenile Law for South Carolina on
Q: I would like to know how to become a paid guardian ad litem in the state of SC?

I have a bachelor's in Education and Psychology, and a master's in Counseling and Coaching. I am currently working with a residential non profit who provides housing and education for sex trafficking survivors. I would like to work with this population as a Guardian ad Litem.

Ryan D Templeton
Ryan D Templeton answered on Dec 4, 2019

Check out this website: https://www.scbar.org/public/get-legal-help/common-legal-topics/guardian-ad-litem/

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for South Carolina on
Q: What are my options for getting my girls back?

I went to court in Anderson county October 25th, 2018. Custody was granted to the paternal grandparents. I have completed everything necessary to have custody returned to me. I am in desperate need of getting a new court date.

Cheryl Ann Truesdale
Cheryl Ann Truesdale answered on Dec 2, 2019

You would have to file a new case seeking custody of your children to get them back. I suggest you get a consultation with a lawyer to review the prior court order and to discuss whether you have sufficient change in circumstances to file for return of custody.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for South Carolina on
Q: Does a guardian have to provide all documents she receives from one party to the other party? What is the code of law?

If a Guardian Ad Litem does not provide the documents requested from one party that the other party gave to her? What violation does that fall under? Especially if the other party requesting gave all their documents that the other party did in fact receive. Does the Guardian Ad Litem have to... Read more »

Ryan D Templeton
Ryan D Templeton answered on Oct 11, 2019

A Guardian does not have to turn over documents unless issued a subpoena. The GAL code sections are 63-3-810 to 63-3-870.

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law, Divorce, Family Law and Child Custody for South Carolina on
Q: How long do I have to report someone giving alcohol, vapes, and marijuana to minors? They made drug deals at a school.

Marijuana was purchased from a middle schooler by an adult at a middle school. It is my understanding that a 1 year old was in the car during the drug deal on school property. The marijuana was brought to the adult's home and smoked with a middle schooler, and the 1 year old was in the home... Read more »

Ryan D Templeton
Ryan D Templeton answered on Oct 9, 2019

There is no statute of limitations in SC on the distribution/purchase of illegal drugs so there is not a set amount of time to report. That being said, unless the drugs are still in existence this is a case that would be very hard to prosecute.

2 Answers | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for South Carolina on
Q: I have been served a summons and notice regarding alleged contempt of a court order. How do I proceed on my own?

I think I need to file an answer with the plaintiff's lawyer and the clerk of court. Should I also provide an affidavit answering the complaint in detail?

Cheryl Ann Truesdale
Cheryl Ann Truesdale answered on Aug 5, 2019

Contempt hearings are not decided on affidavits, but rather on evidence and testimony presented at the hearing. The burden to prove contempt is on the moving party and must show which specific paragraph of the Order was violated. Evidence presented must show that the accused party willfully... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for South Carolina on
Q: Can you appeal/overturn an ex parte/emergency custody order?
Cheryl Ann Truesdale
Cheryl Ann Truesdale answered on Apr 29, 2019

An ex parte Emergency order is an interim order and as such cannot be appealed. Most such orders, however, provide for a subsequent hearing, once the defendant is served, to allow a challenge to the decision. You can also file a motion for reconsideration within ten days of receiving the order.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for South Carolina on
Q: I need to get custody of my daughter back, and the man on the birth certificate is not the biological father.

He was granted joint custody with him as the domicilary parent, with me only being granted supervised visitations at his discretion, but he doesn't allow me to see her at all, and she is in a dangerous environment. Please help.

Cheryl Ann Truesdale
Cheryl Ann Truesdale answered on Apr 8, 2019

You need to consult with a lawyer in your area to help you file either a contempt action of a modification action.

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