Protecting Your Parental Rights
No issues create more stress in a divorce, or in a breakup of a relationship than those involving your children. Our first priority in any case will always remain the long-term best interests of your children. The ultimate objective of all of our actions is to minimize the impact on the emotional well-being and peace of mind of your children.
Securing a child custody arrangement, whether agreed upon by both parties or through court proceedings, requires a careful individualized approach. Cookie-cutter strategies do not work, and fast, loose answers end in bad results. Each parent needs to think about the needs of the child and how these needs relate to each parent. At Robert L. Isaacs & Associates, we spend the time necessary to discover the important issues and use them to find agreement. We have been assisting the families of Henrico and the greater Richmond area since 1995.
How Does Child Custody Work In Virginia?
We understand that dealing with a custody and/or visitation dispute may be one of the most difficult times in your life as a parent. Whether your custody issue has arisen as part of a divorce or you have never married the other parent, we can provide the guidance, counsel and representation you and your family need. In Virginia, we consider two types of custody.
- Physical custody refers to the physical amount of time spent with the child or children. Parents with joint physical custody will each enjoy a significant amount of parenting time. If the child spends more time with one parent, that parent generally will be designated as the primary custodial parent. Noncustodial parents are granted parenting time according to a visitation schedule based on the parents’ circumstances.
- Legal custody involves the ability to make decisions regarding religious upbringing, schooling, health care and other matters of particular importance regarding the child or children.
The court will consider a host of factors to determine what type of custody arrangement is in the child’s best interest. The physical custody order can affect the child support calculation, as well. Often, the noncustodial parent pays child support to the custodial parent to help cover the child’s financial needs.
In many cases, parents are able to create their own custody and visitation agreement. This can have many benefits for the entire family and studies have shown that they often work better for both the parents and the children involved than custody orders created by the court. Our attorneys are skilled negotiators who can help you with this process.
As the child matures, or people relocate and their lives change, a modification to the custody agreement may become necessary. We assist with modifications of those existing orders too. As long as the child is under the age of 18, a court may consider the present needs of the family to make a decision regarding custody or visitation.