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Child Custody and Visitation

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Child Custody and Visitation

We guide our clients throughout their divorce, resolving their legal problems in the most practical and efficient way possible.

Virginia Child Custody and Visitation Lawyers

If you are facing a divorce, child custody and visitation are very likely among the most important matters you will need to address. Because your parental rights and your children’s best interests are paramount, you are well-advised to work closely with an experienced Virginia child custody attorney.

Legal Custody

In Virginia, custody breaks down into both legal and physical custody, which incorporates visitation. Legal custody relates to who will be making important life decisions for your children moving forward, and it can be either sole (one parent takes on the responsibility) or joint (both of you share the responsibility). The kinds of questions involved include those related to:

  • Your children’s ongoing education
  • Your children’s medical needs and health care
  • Your children’s extracurricular activities
  • Your children’s religious instruction

Conversely, those decisions that relate to the mechanics of daily living are left to the parent who is with the children at the time.

Physical Custody and Visitation

Physical custody relates to the visitation schedule by which your children split their time between the two of you. Physical custody can also be either sole or joint, but the court needs a very compelling reason for shutting down a parent’s right to at least some form of visitation with his or her children.

Sometimes, one parent becomes the primary custodial parent with whom the children spend the majority of their time, and the other parent has a visitation schedule. When it comes to physical custody, however, you can also split your time equally (or nearly equally) according to whatever schedule you and the other parent are willing to accept.

Negotiations

The most straightforward path forward involves you and your divorcing spouse negotiating your child custody terms between yourselves and avoiding the court’s intervention in the matter. Your seasoned child custody attorney will help you explore your options toward this end.

Factors Considered by the Court

The judge in your case is required to consider your children’s best interests. In the process of making final decisions on the matter, however, the court will take wide-ranging factors into consideration, including:

  • Each of your children’s ages and the physical and mental health status of each of them
  • You and your spouse’s ages and the physical and mental health status of each of you
  • The role that each parent plays in each child’s upbringing
  • The unique relationship between each child and each parent; the degree to which each parent is positively involved in each child’s life; and each parent’s ability to accurately assess and meet the emotional, physical, and intellectual needs of each child
  • Each child’s unique needs in relation to maintaining relationships with their siblings, peers, and members of their extended family
  • Each parent’s propensity to support each child’s ongoing relationship with the other parent

Turn to an Experienced Virginia Child Custody Attorney Today

The dedicated Virginia child custody attorneys at Virginia Family Law Center are on your side and here to help. To learn more, please don’t wait to reach out and contact us today.

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