James D. Miller II, Esq.

The Miller Firm, LLC


937-259-8031 or


Email: james@millerlawohio.com

Dayton, Ohio Child Custody Attorney

Child custody issues can be both confusing and emotional.  The Miller Firm's Dayton, Ohio child custody lawyer is committed to providing each of its clients with diligent, compassionate representation that is both affordable and efficient.  The Miller Firm strives to fully understand the unique issues and complexities of every case in order to achieve a favorable result.  If you need legal help with any divorce, child custody, or other family law matter, contact The Miller Firm today at (937) 259 - 8031 for a free consultation.  

Types of Child Custody Cases

There are several different contexts in which custody issues could arise in Ohio.  One type of custody case involves the allocation of parental rights in a divorce or dissolution proceeding.  The second type of custody case involves custody of children whose parents are not married.  Another type of custody case is when there has been an allegation that a minor child has been abused, neglected, or is dependent.  Lastly, there are custody issues with regard to grandparents' rights to custody and visitation.  All of these cases will in large part be decided based on what is in "the best interest of the child."

Domestic Relations Courts and Child Custody

Custody in Divorces and Dissolutions

Understandably, in any divorce or dissolution involving minor children, custody of the children is often the most contentious issue.  In the context of a dissolution, however, the issue of child custody must be agreed upon by the parties before the petition for dissolution is filed.  In a divorce, unless the parties can come to an agreement regarding child custody before the final divorce hearing, the domestic relations court which has jurisdiction over the divorce action will ultimately decide how parental rights are allocated.   

Unmarried Parents

Under Ohio Revised Code, Section 3109.042, an unmarried female who gives birth to a child is the sole residential parent and legal custodian until a court of competent jurisdiction issues an order designating another person as the residential parent and legal custodian.  However, in some situations the father of the child(ren) can later petition the juvenile court with jurisdiction for shared parenting.  In other situations when the mother is unfit or unable to financially or emotionally provide for the child(ren), the father may petition the court for legal custody.  If the father is awarded legal custody of the child(ren) by the court, the mother may then only be entitled to visitation.  

Abuse, Dependency, or Neglect

Under Ohio law, third parties or governmental agencies may file a petition for custody of minor children in a juvenile court with jurisdiction on the grounds of abuse, dependency, or neglect.  Some common issues which arise in these types of custody cases are physical abuse, domestic violence, drug abuse, or sexual abuse.


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