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How does a GAL work with parents that live in two different states?

Delavan, WI |

Going for custody of my step son. He resides in Ohio and I in Wisconsin. My lawyer requested a GAL but I don't know how this will work when we live where we live. I do visit my son once a month for a weekend when mother lets me even though it is court ordered. Will the GAL want to come to Wisconsin or will I meet with them in Ohio?

Attorney Answers 1

  1. First, every Guardian ad Litem is different in how he/she conducts their investigation. That being said, the GAL will not travel to Ohio given the relatively small amount of upfront money the GAL is given as a deposit. Most likely, the GAL will want to talk to you and other individuals in Ohio over the phone. The GAL certainly will want you to execute releases of information so that he/she can information from agencies, institutions or other individuals that he/she believes will assist in preparing a recommendation on what is in the child(ren)'s best interests. If you are in a financial position to come to Wisconsin to meet with the GAL and speak to him/her face-to-face, make the effort to do so since this is your motion for custody. Talk to your attorney about the role of the GAL and how to present yourself to him/her. Hope this helps.

    My answer does not automatically make me your attorney or create a former-client/current-client relationship with you. I encourage you to speak with an attorney before acting upon any of the statements I make. If you would like to speak with me further about your issue, please schedule a free initial consultation (in person or over the phone) by calling my office at (920) 459-8490, or by emailing me at You can also visit for more information.

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