Protecting Your Interests In Custody And Visitation Cases
At McClung & Associates, attorneys Kerry McClung and Chase Whittaker have experience fighting for the best interests of children involved in custody disputes. Both attorneys have done guardian ad litem work related to child custody matters, and Chase was a Court Appointed Special Advocate for children in Henrico County for two years.
We understand you want to provide the best environment for your children as a parent. We can fight for your custody and visitation rights in court, mediation sessions, or private negotiations. We will explain your options clearly and stay with you through each step of your legal matter.
How Virginia Custody Decisions Are Determined
Virginia courts typically review a family’s situation in a divorce action to determine if one parent should have sole legal (decision-making) or physical (housing) custody, or if it should be joint (shared) custody. Some of the factors the court will consider in making this decision include:
- Willingness of each parent to support the other party’s parenting role
- Age and mental health of each parent
- The connection each parent has forged with their child
- Any history of domestic violence or child abuse in the family unit
If the other parent is awarded sole physical custody of a child, judges will typically order significant visitation time for the other parent. This time may be stipulated to be supervised or unsupervised.
What Are Parenting Plans And Why Do I Need One?
Parenting plans are not required by law in Virginia, but they offer the chance to hammer out thorny parenting issues related to child custody and prevent future conflict. Some of the things to consider when crafting a parenting plan include:
- The distance between parents’ houses and what shared schedule works best for the children
- How to handle pick-ups and drop-offs (location, timing, etc.)
- How to handle vacations, holidays and long trips
- What flexibility exists within this plan and when should the plan be modified to reflect changing circumstances that impact the child (for example, if one parent moves out of state)
Hire A Trustworthy Custody Advocate Today
Custody matters turn out better when you have a dedicated, experienced divorce attorney on your side. Our firm’s attorneys will help you understand the dynamics in play during the custody negotiations and how to achieve your goals for that part of your divorce. To receive an initial phone consultation, call our office in Henrico County at 804-548-6565.