Guardian ad Litem - South Carolina Certified

Role of the Guardian ad Litem

  • The Guardian ad Litem  (GAL) is the child's voice in court.  
  • The GAL may be an attorney or a certified trained non-attorney appointed by a family court judge to protect the interests of a child under the age of 18.       
  • When a child is the subject of a contested court action there may be many unanswered questions about the child's well-being.  The family court judge may deem it necessary to have more information about the child's life. 
  • The court may appoint a guardian ad litem only when it determines that:  
    • (1) without a guardian ad litem, the court will likely not be fully informed about the facts of the case and there is a substantial dispute which necessitates a guardian ad litem; or  
    • (2) both parties consent to the appointment of a guardian ad litem who is approved by the court.  
  • The court has absolute discretion in determining who will be appointed as a guardian ad litem in each case.
  •  A guardian ad litem must be appointed to a case by a court order. 

Costs of Services

The family court judge determines the Guardian ad Litem fees. Guardian ad Litem services  are set by the family court judge.