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Virginia Child Custody Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Virginia on
Q: Ex and I have joint custody, he's custodial, yet won't let me see them. I'm 5 mins away, can he keep them from me!?

Joint legal custody with communicable visitation, they live with him bc I lived out of state. I moved back and live 5 min from them, yet he wont let me see them or talk to them. They don't even know I've moved back and are 10, 8 and 6.

Thomas Woodward Ashton
Thomas Woodward Ashton answered on Aug 22, 2018

It likely depends on the exact language in your order. Lots of orders out there have standard language that allows "reasonable and liberal visitation as agreed between the parties." The issue in cases where (a) this language is included, and (b) visitation is being denied by the custodial parent,... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Virginia on
Q: I'm 17 and my grandparents have raised me. I want them to have full custody. Can I file a petition myself?

Do my parents have a right to fight me on my decision?

Thomas Woodward Ashton
Thomas Woodward Ashton answered on Aug 13, 2018

Unless you are an emancipated minor (in which case custody wouldn't be an issue), the answer is almost certainly no. Your grandparents may be able to file themselves, seeking non-parent custody. Or a sympathetic parent who agrees with your wishes may file to change custody. But yes, your parents... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Virginia on
Q: I am asking for physical custody of my daughter and we went to mediation and can't agree on custody? What do I do?
Thomas Woodward Ashton
Thomas Woodward Ashton answered on Aug 13, 2018

You should contact an experienced attorney immediately, in order to protect your rights.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Virginia on
Q: I’m 16 almost 17, how much of a say do I have to get visitation rights changed?
Thomas Woodward Ashton
Thomas Woodward Ashton answered on Aug 13, 2018

Custody cases across the board are usually extremely case-specific, meaning that no one answer is likely to be accurate in all apparently similar scenarios. The answer also often varies by jurisdiction and even by which judge within a particular jurisdiction hears your case. However, in my... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Virginia on
Q: Is there any type of law that requires my ex to inform me if he is going to be away from my kids for an extended time?

My children currently live with their father, but we have joint legal custody. Is he required in some way to inform me if he leaves them for an extended unpredictable amount of time?

Laura B. Butler
Laura B. Butler answered on Jul 16, 2018

While it certainly would be good practice if he were to keep you informed of such an absence, if the order does not require him to keep you informed when he leaves the children for an extended unpredictable amount of time then he would not be in violation of the order if he did not share that... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Virginia on
Q: Va Code 20-108.2(D), parties shall share unreimbursed medical OVER $250. Does the custodial parent eat the first $250?

If minor child accumulates $1,000 in medical expenses in a calendar year, does the custodial parent pay the first $250, then both parents split the remaining $750?

Sharon R. Moss
Sharon R. Moss answered on Jul 16, 2018

That is how the old version of the code reads. Yes, that is how it is interpreted. The custodial parent pays the first $250 and then anything over that is split by the parents.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Virginia on
Q: Can she get more child support and spousal support?

My boyfriend’s ex (currently married still to her) he is paying child support for there two kids one is 16 one is now 18 she has been moved out and out of school since oct of 2017 and now the mother is taking it back to court to get more child support from him! My question is can she? And can she... Read more »

Sharon R. Moss
Sharon R. Moss answered on Jun 26, 2018

If they are under a court order in Virginia for child support, the child turning 18 and emancipating is a material change in circumstances that would allow her the ability to ask the court to recalculate child support. The circumstances of the parties now as opposed to when the original order was... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce, Child Custody and Child Support for Virginia on
Q: Child support questions in Virginia?

My husband is divorced in 2008 with 4 kids? He paid Alimony and He is still paying child support for his kids. His kids ages are 23, 21, 18 and 16. All kids graduated from school except the last one. We are having a baby together. Do we have to pay child support when they are in college? We met... Read more »

Michael Christopher Miller
Michael Christopher Miller answered on Jun 20, 2018

Unless the parents agree otherwise, child support ends at age 18 or high school graduation, unless there is some permanent disability.

Often times settlement agreement do have college expense obligations that are separate from child support obligations.

Any financial arrangement...
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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Virginia on
Q: Can I request a set of interrogatories without having an attorney

I received my first set of interrogatory questions from my son's father's attorney in a custody case I do not have an attorney am I able to request these questions also from him.

Sharon R. Moss
Sharon R. Moss answered on Jun 18, 2018

Yes, if you are representing yourself you have the right to issue Interrogatories and Requests for Production of Documents in the case as well.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody and Civil Rights for Virginia on
Q: Ex husband is narcissistic. Stalking my fiancé and threatening to call the cops when we’re at his place.

He threatens to tell lies on him of abuse and just pops up whenever he likes demand immediate access to the kids. I try and try to work with, but he so focused on hurting me. Is there any hope for full custody? Can my fiancé file for defamation of character?

Gary Kollin
Gary Kollin answered on Jun 13, 2018

Why doesn't your fiance file criminal charges or seek a restraining order?

Why would you be at his place?

Go to court in your divorce proceedings and get judicial involvement in child visitation.

Consult with a lawyer whether you may record the conversations since it is made...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Virginia on
Q: what is the law for serving by publication out of state

No prior child custody order was in place prior to me and our daughter moved from Va to Ga on July 28, 2017

father filed for Custody and Visitation on Feb. 22, 2018. I understand that Ga has do to our length of time here Jurisdiction. I have filed for child support in Ga in August and he... Read more »

Michael Christopher Miller
Michael Christopher Miller answered on Jun 12, 2018

Service by publication is the last resort for service when one cannot find the person to be served.

Provide the GAL your address so the GAL can serve you directly.

Also, file your address with the court(s) so no one can say they don't know where to serve you.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Child Support for Virginia on
Q: Can a parent terminate their parental rights after losing custody in Virginia? Would child support still be obligated..

After termination? custody was filed under the false pretense the mother was unable to be contacted or located. And was excluded from the custody proceedings. Is termination of parental custody permanent if filed in state of Virginia?

Sharon R. Moss
Sharon R. Moss answered on Jun 6, 2018

Did you lose custody or did the state terminate your rights? They are two very different things. If you lost custody, but not parental rights, then child support is still an obligation for the non-custodial parent.

A parent can not voluntarily terminate their rights to a child unless...
Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Child Custody for Virginia on
Q: How would I go about filing for custody of a child who currently resides out of state?

I reside in Virginia currently and my child resides in North Carolina. Custody was granted under the pretense that I was no where to be found, when in fact the party knew of my where abouts. In addition, permanent custody (final decision, the paper says) was granted without my participation in the... Read more »

Sharon R. Moss
Sharon R. Moss answered on Jun 5, 2018

It depends on where the last custody order was issued and how long the child has lived in North Carolina. If the child has lived in North Carolina, then the courts there have jurisdiction over the child, however, the current custody order is not from North Carolina, you will have to ask the North... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Virginia on
Q: what happens if a parent isn't following a visitation order to see his children?

We have a court order in place that states the father of my children is supposed to have visitation with my children supervised at least once a week. He hasnt seen them in 3 weeks and hasnt even bothered to contact me for 2 weeks.

Steve Miyares
Steve Miyares answered on May 25, 2018

The court has no power to force a noncustodial parent to exercise visitation. When the court orders visitation, it is ensuring that the noncustodial parent is not denied an opportunity to spend time with their children. If the parent chooses to jot take that opportunity and chooses to not see... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Virginia on
Q: Hi there, I live in Marion VA. I have a daughter that is 15 years old. Can she have say so in visitation?

My daughter is 15. Her father lives in Kentucky. The visitation was set up when she was 6. She is getting older and would like to have some more say in the visitation scheduling. Her father said he wanted that as well. But, If it doesn't benefit him he doesn't want her to have any say. Should I... Read more »

Steve Miyares
Steve Miyares answered on May 25, 2018

One of the statutory factors a Virginia court must consider in visitation orders is the preference of the child in light of the child’s age and maturity level. Therefore, the court would not have put much weight on the preference of a 6 year old child, the court would give more consideration to... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce, Family Law, Child Custody and Juvenile Law for Virginia on
Q: I'm 13 and want to live with my dad who lives down the street but my mom with full custody wont allow it....help?

He has wanted me to live with him for a while, i have a better relationship with him than my mom and step-dad. Those 2 abuse//hit me when there mad at me.

Wayne E. Holcomb
Wayne E. Holcomb answered on May 20, 2018

Hello. We would need to talk to your father I suppose. This is probably your only option right now. Hang in there.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Virginia on
Q: I'm moving to Canada and I have no court order to even have visitation of my son how do I make it so he can visit me?

His father has had full custody for 5 years but I see my son every other weekend. I have no legal standing because I couldnt make it to court I was in FL at the time. I dont want to take custody because my son wants to live with his dad but I want him to be able to visit. His dad wont let me take... Read more »

Steve Miyares
Steve Miyares answered on May 15, 2018

Moving to Canad is a significant chamge in circumstances since the Court last made a custody decision 5 years ago. Based on the chang in circumstances, you can petitin the court to modify the visitation schedule from the prior order. You should consult with an attorney to help you pursue the best... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Virginia on
Q: How can I (the mother) get sole legal custody of my daughter?

My daughter was concieved against my will even though he and I were in a relationship. I was a 17 year old runaway, living with a friend (not him), and he was 28 and is a felon with drug abuse issues. He hid his age from me until I found his facebook. I have no idea where he is now. I know he does... Read more »

Steve Miyares
Steve Miyares answered on May 15, 2018

You can petition the Jivenile and Domestic Relations Court to award full custody to you. The JDR court would also be wheee you petition for an order of child support from the father.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Divorce for Virginia on
Q: My wife was cheating on me (i can prove it), can i keep the custody of my kids

I work in the tech field and for the past year or so, my wife has been cheating on me..before her parents were with me but suddently they have made a u turn and are telling me to continue my life as is which means that i should be ok with her seeing the other guy (totally absurd). Ofcourse I am not... Read more »

Sharon R. Moss
Sharon R. Moss answered on May 15, 2018

There is no presumption of mother over father for custody in Virginia. The court will look at what is in the best interests of the children when they are deciding on custody. You will need to have evidence that it is in the children's best interest to reside primarily with you rather than your... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Child Custody for Virginia on
Q: My husband walked out on my son & I over a week ago. If he files for the divorce first, will he be able to take my son?
Michael Christopher Miller
Michael Christopher Miller answered on May 9, 2018

Matters of custody and visitation are decided upon the "best interest of the child" factors at Va. Code 20-124.3. Who files when has nothing to do with the outcome.

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