Child Custody

Serving the greater Columbus, Franklin county and Central Ohio areas.

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Southside Ohio Child Custody Lawyer

Seasoned Legal Representation for High Stakes Child Custody Disputes

Nothing is more important than the parent-child relationship, and a divorce does not need to change that. At Lawrence Law Office, we work with mothers and fathers to help them maintain bonds with their children. Our attorneys have deep experience negotiating favorable parenting plans or going into court and fighting for our client’s rights.

To learn more, contact one of our Southside Ohio child custody lawyers today. The sooner we get started, the stronger your case will be.

Understanding Custody in Ohio

Ohio has dispensed with the term custody and replaced it with the phrase “parental rights and responsibilities.” However, the concept is pretty much the same. If you are divorcing—or if you and the other parent were never married—you must allocate custody between the two of you. These rights and responsibilities include:

  • The ability to make legal decisions for your children regarding education, medical care, and other vital issues.
  • Time spent with your children, i.e., physical possession.

Ohio has a strong policy of keeping both parents involved in their children’s lives, and shared parenting is fairly common. Nevertheless, it isn’t required, and sole custody might be awarded where one parent is a danger to the children.

Negotiating a Custody Agreement

Parents have the option of determining custody between the two of them. They can then craft a detailed parenting plan that lays out who will have physical possession of the child and when. For help finding common ground, parents can participate in mediation, where they explain the dispute to a third-party mediator. At Lawrence Law Office, our Southside Ohio child custody lawyers have sat beside many clients in mediation, and we understand the process well.

Unfortunately, negotiation is not always successful. If a judge must decide custody, then he or she will consider a variety of factors to reach what is in your child’s best interests. You can find these factors spelled out in Ohio Revised Code § 3109.04, which include:

  • Each parent’s relationship with the child
  • The stability of each parent’s home and lifestyle
  • Parenting ability
  • Each parent’s willingness to cooperate with the other parent
  • A history of abuse or neglect
  • The child’s wishes if he or she is old enough

Because this is a nuanced analysis, no one factor controls. A judge’s determination is hard to set aside on appeal, however, so parents benefit greatly by having seasoned legal counsel make arguments on their behalf.

Modifying Child Custody

Once judges set custody, they are not eager to revisit it frequently. For this reason, modifying custody can be quite difficult. A parent must show a change in circumstances that warrant a change in custody before a judge will even consider the motion. The parent seeking a modification also must show that changing custody would be in the child’s best interests.

Some change in circumstances we have seen include:

  • One or both parents moving
  • Change in parental work schedules
  • A parent’s criminal conviction or incarceration
  • Child endangerment
  • The child’s preference (when old enough)

Happily, parents can tweak the parenting plan to grow and adapt with their child. Many parents realize that extra-curricular activities, longer hours at work, and other circumstances render the current parenting plan too inflexible. Fortunately, parents can negotiate changes that work for them. However, even minor tweaks might require judicial intervention if the other parent refuses to agree.

How a Southside Ohio Child Custody Lawyer Can Help

Child custody disputes are difficult. Even if both parents want to reach an agreement and avoid a custody fight, they might have hit a wall in negotiation.

We can help. Linda J. Lawrence and Rodd S. Lawrence have assisted many parents push past an impasse in negotiations to reach an agreement that truly is in the best interests of the children. When necessary, we can also gather evidence for a contested custody hearing before a judge.

As part of our services, we can:

  • Establish paternity, which is necessary for a man to obtain custody
  • Analyze how a judge would likely decide custody if you end up in court
  • Explain your rights and responsibilities as a parent
  • Collect evidence that shows your close bond with your children
  • If necessary, find evidence that casts doubt on the other parent’s ability to meet the child’s needs

No two child custody cases are alike. Our lawyers understand how judges in this county think and will pull together an effective case on your behalf.

Client Reviews

Had free consultation. Advice given was taken, and resulted in change of mind in the other/opposing party. We therefore did not need to retain. Should opposing party resume original opinion, we will retain.


I was in a terrible custody dispute with my ex. I was very upset and afraid of my ex. Rodd listened to everything I said and remembered everything I said. He was aggressive in court and used the information I gave him very well. We won the case and my ex has backed off.


I wanted an easy divorce from my wife. She wanted a fight. Rodd and I discussed fair terms for a dissolution. Because he was pro active and stayed on top of the case, my wife and I finally reached an agreement and had a dissolution. I highly recommend Rodd.


I hired Linda Lawrence because I have a business and I wanted to protect it in my divorce. Linda is top notch and knows about business finance and assets. I was able to keep my business and not have to pay my wife anything from it. Hire her.


I hired Linda Lawrence because I needed an aggressive attorney. Linda was able to stand up against the other attorney and was very aggressive in court. It was an expensive divorce case, but that was because the other attorney was very aggressive and Linda was very thorough. I had great results in my case and highly recommend Linda.


Speak with a Southside Ohio Child Custody Lawyer Today

Do not attempt to negotiate custody alone. At Lawrence Law Office, we will serve as your sounding board and your advocate during this stressful time. Contact us today to schedule a confidential, no-obligation consultation with one of our lawyers.

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Our Practice Areas

Family Law

Attorneys for Divorce, Child Custody & More At the Lawrence Law Office, we are committed to helping families in conflict find creative solutions that focus on addressing their goals and...


Columbus & Delaware, OH Divorce Lawyers In Ohio, there is more than one way to separate from your partner and dissolve your marriage. A divorce is typically a contested proceeding, with each side...

Contempt and
Enforcement and
Post divorce

When working through your divorce with an Ohio family law attorney, chances are your divorce agreement made allowances for child support. spousal support or

Business owner

Dividing the marital assets between divorcing people can be one of the most contentious issues during the entire divorce process. Ohio law allows the couple to work together with...

Child Custody

Dividing the marital assets between divorcing people can be one of the most contentious issues during the entire divorce process. Ohio law allows the couple to work together with...

High Asset
Divorce Cases

Helping With Child Custody, Visitation & Support Updates Or Modifications Sometimes circumstances substantially change after a divorce and require parents to revisit an existing...


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