As with other states, Virginia courts give primary attention to the best interests of the child rather than an individual parent when awarding custody. The court may award either joint or sole custody depending on the needs of the child. However, unlike many other states, Virginia custody law does not create a presumption in favor of either parent.
When issuing a custody order, the factors which a Virginia court may consider include, but are not limited to:
The state of Virginia encourages parents to share in child-rearing responsibilities. Except in situations where the child’s safety is in question, the parents are expected to cooperate with one another and encourage continuous contact between all parties. This means that the parents should resolve past and future conflicts when possible, in order to preserve the best interests of the child.
Child custody decisions can be complex and the process can often cover a long period of time. For this reason it is to your advantage to secure the services of a lawyer, especially if custody will be heavily disputed. Furthermore, a competent attorney can keep you updated with any changes in laws and adjustments in the status of the custody claim.
Last Modified: 05-01-2017 04:44 PM PDTLaw Library Disclaimer
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