Many Georgia residents relate to the traumas that are involved in certain custody battles, but not many are aware of additional traumas sometimes faced by undocumented immigrants.

Many immigrants come to this country seeking a better life and have children here who become American citizens by nature of their birthplace. Sadly, many of these parents struggle when it comes to matters of child custody, as is the case for one Georgia couple who have lost their parental rights to their children and continue to fight to regain custody.

The two parents are both undocumented immigrants from Guatemala. According to one court official, the couple has a second grade education and speaks little English.

The couple lost their five children to the foster care system several years ago when the Department of Family and Children's Services claimed they were malnourished. A plan was offered to the couple to regain custody, and after three years of following that plan, the children remain in foster care.

Advocates for the parents say their immigration status is the real reason their children haven't been returned to them, along with their inability to speak English. However, county officials say several of the children have disabilities and they don't believe the couple is capable of taking care of them.

The parents lost their parental rights in a juvenile court in June. Now the foster family that has the children hopes to adopt them.

Georgia resident dealing with child custody matters may find it best to seek out the assistance of an experienced family law attorney. The attorney will likely be able to sort through the various issues and help families reach a fair resolution.

Source: Colorlines, "Georgia Immigrant Couple Fights to Regain Custody of Kids," Seth Freed Wessler, Nov. 30, 2011