Paul & Perdue Attorneys knows that, when you are parting ways with your co-parent or divorcing a spouse, you have important questions regarding your child or children, such as who will have custody of your children, and when you will be able to visit with them. At Paul & Perdue Attorneys, we believe the best way to approach any custody dispute is to have a plan. Our experienced custody and visitation attorneys, will develop a plan to help you achieve a peaceful settlement. Tension and Anger between parents can negatively impact your children’s educational and social well-being. Our attorneys will do our best to help you settle your custody case. However, if the case goes to trial, our experienced attorneys will develop a trial plan and fight for your rights. Our motto is life is easier, if you have a plan. Call us and Discover the Power of a Plan.
Click Here for Our Custody Case Roadmap to learn more about the Timeline of a Custody Case
Experienced Lawyers Finding Solutions to Custody Disputes
Custody cases determine where the child is going to live and how much time the other parent will have to visit with the child(ren).
Types of Custody
Legal Custody – dictates which parent has the legal authority make certain key decisions, for example school or medical, about their child. Legal custody can be sole or joint.
Physical Custody – dictates where the child lives. The primary physical custodian is the parent with whom the child lives the majority of the time. The other parent is referred to as the noncustodial parent.
Visitation – the noncustodial parent may be granted certain time with child. This time is referred to as visitation. Historically, visitation for the noncustodial parent was every other weekend. However, judges in today’s custody cases often formulate creative schedules that consider the needs and activities of the children with an eye towards maximizing time with each parent.
How Do Judges Decide Who Gets Custody of the Child(ren)?
Judges must determine which custody and visitation arrangement is in the best interest of the child. In reaching a decision on the best interests of the child, Judges apply the factors in Virginia Code Section 20-124.3. The factors are:
1. The age and physical and mental condition of the child, giving due consideration to the child’s changing developmental needs;
2. The age and physical and mental condition of each parent;
3. The relationship existing between each parent and each child, giving due consideration to the positive involvement with the child’s life, the ability to accurately assess and meet the emotional, intellectual and physical needs of the child;
4. The needs of the child, giving due consideration to other important relationships of the child, including but not limited to siblings, peers and extended family members;
5. The role that each parent has played and will play in the future, in the upbringing and care of the child;
6. The propensity of each parent to actively support the child’s contact and relationship with the other parent, including whether a parent has unreasonably denied the other parent access to or visitation with the child;
7. The relative willingness and demonstrated ability of each parent to maintain a close and continuing relationship with the child, and the ability of each parent to cooperate in and resolve disputes regarding matters affecting the child;
8. The reasonable preference of the child, if the court deems the child to be of reasonable intelligence, understanding, age and experience to express such a preference;
9. Any history of family abuse as that term is defined in § 16.1-228 or sexual abuse. If the court finds such a history, the court may disregard the factors in subdivision 6; and
10. Such other factors as the court deems necessary and proper to the determination.
Areas We Serve.
Chesterfield, Chester, Colonial Heights, Dinwiddie, Fort Lee, Hopewell, Midlothian, Petersburg, Powhatan, Prince George, Richmond and Sussex.