Here’s what parents need to know about child custody

Winning a child custody case is not going to be easy. However, if you have prepared your case with solid evidence, you have high chances of winning the case and your child back.

Before going into the courtroom and making your appearance in front of the judge, make sure you are up to date with everything you need to know about Virginia’s child custody laws.

Terminology: it is extremely important that parents are fully familiar with the terminologies of child custody as they are most likely to come up. It will be expected that parents are clearly aware of them. The most common ones will be sole custody, visitation, and joint custody.

  • When you have the sole custody of your child, it means that you have total control of making your child’s life decisions. You will decide what school your child will go to, which doctor to take your child to, where your child will play.
  • As one of the parents gets custody, the other will get visitation. Make sure to never be late and arrive on time for pickups. Also, don’t make a habit of rearranging or postponing your appointments with the kids. In some extreme cases, the judge calls for supervised visitation, where a third party is present to oversee the visitation.
  • If the judge decides to order joint custody, both the parents will have to work together to make the decisions for their child.

Mediation and Child Custody: in the state of Virginia, the term “mediation” is taken as a substitute for litigation. The purpose is to come up with a parenting strategy that takes care of the child’s accommodation arrangements as well as how the parent’s arguments and disagreements will be tackled in the future.

Child’s best interests: Keeping in mind that the child’s best interests are to be protected, the Virginian family court will decide which parent gets the child’s custody. There are 10 factors that are considered by Virginia’s judge to determine what’s best for the child.

  • Age, mental and physical state of the child
  • Age, mental and physical state of each parent
  • History of family abuse, if any
  • The child’s desire and preference, If the child is 12 years or older and is capable of understanding the situation
  • Each parents part in the child’s nurturing
  • The child’s relationship with its parents, siblings and extended family members
  • Each parent’s inclination to have a relationship with their child and the other parent
  • Any other factor the court considers essential

No Virginia custody case is deemed to be complete without taking these factors into consideration.

Relocation and Child Custody in Virginia: Any parent that has intentions of shifting to another place, must let the court and the other parent know at least 30 days in advance. The parent must also provide its new postal address unless the court deems it needless.

Virginia Child Custody and Criminal Convictions: The family court of Virginia places great importance and can even prevent the parent from procuring its child custody if it was found guilty of crimes, such as:

  • Murder,
  • voluntary manslaughter,

Felony attempt