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Virginia Family Law Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Virginia on
Q: Can previous interrogatories and admissions be used in appeal case from JDR to Circuit Court in Virginia?

I was granted primary custody of a child in July. The other party appealed and they were granted a trial de novo in Circuit Court. We are both currently pro-se. I previously submitted admissions and interrogatories for the case in July. The other party responded but did not provide their own... Read more »

James H. Wilson Jr.
James H. Wilson Jr. answered on Nov 7, 2019

A witness can be impeached by prior inconsistent testimony or sworn responses in discovery. Impeachment requires a particular sequence of questioning that allows the witness to first give correct testimony, recollect instances of prior testimony, and then acknowledge prior inconsistencies. There... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Virginia on
Q: Can father get emergency custody?

Can father get emergency custody after mother has had child for 13years and been to court twice and remains custodial parent

Michael Christopher Miller
Michael Christopher Miller answered on Oct 30, 2019

The court views "emergency" as a life or death situation, not someone not wanting to wait their turn.

File a petition to modify custody, and file an emergency motion. The court clerk and/or judge will review them to see if an emergency exists. If so, the court will docket a hearing to...
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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Virginia on
Q: My wife and I are from NC. She is the bio parent of our son, bio fathers rights were terminated. can we apply in va?

My wife does not pay any bills and has not gotten a new license. Therefore has no proof of residence tho we’ve been here for over a year(just never got around to dmv). So would we be able to apply for a name change for our son who is 3? Or would we need to do it in NC?

Michael Christopher Miller
Michael Christopher Miller answered on Oct 29, 2019

Va. Code § 8.01-217. How name of person may be changed.

A. Any person desiring to change his own name, or that of his child or ward, may apply therefor to the circuit court of the county or city in which the person whose name is to be changed resides, or if no place of abode exists, such...
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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Support for Virginia on
Q: Hello, I conceived in SA Texas. I live in Virginia now. Never married.

I conceived in Texas (San Antonio) I lived there for 6 months and bought a home. When the father found out I was pregnant he abandoned/ left me and my baby. I moved to Virginia with my parents. I want to file child support in Texas but the father is fighting this. Texas child support stated I could... Read more »

Michael Christopher Miller
Michael Christopher Miller answered on Oct 29, 2019

Wherever you file for child support, the case will be heard in a court where the payor resides.

You can file in Va., but Va. DCSE will transfer the case to Texas. Or, you can file directly in Texas.

If the father is subject to Texas jurisdiction, there is nothing to fight....
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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Arbitration / Mediation Law, Civil Litigation and Landlord - Tenant for Virginia on
Q: Ex won't pay back security deposit refund that I paid.

So when my ex and I moved into an apartment together, I paid the $500 security deposit and we agreed that she wouldn't have to split it because I would get it back when we moved out. So when we move out, the apartment complex sends her the check by accident with both our names on it. She chased it... Read more »

F. Paul Maloof
F. Paul Maloof answered on Oct 14, 2019

Your mosy likely recourse for success is to file a lawsuit, probably in Small Claims Court, if the amount is $5000 or less.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Virginia on
Q: How can I be permitted to visit with my 11 year old nephew, if the parents do not allow me to?

They are not legally separated, but live in separate dwellings.

Michael Christopher Miller
Michael Christopher Miller answered on Sep 3, 2019

Va. Code § 20-124.2. Court-ordered custody and visitation arrangements.

. . .

B. In determining custody, the court shall give primary consideration to the best interests of the child. The court shall consider and may award joint legal, joint physical, or sole custody, and there...
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1 Answer | Asked in Child Support, Divorce and Family Law for Virginia on
Q: I filed divorce from my husband. My lawyer is telling me to decide on a dollar amount for child support

We have 2 children age 5 and age 11. How do I come up with this figure? Is there a guideline for the state of Virginia? What if I pick a number too high and he won’t sign? How do I know what is fair?

Michael Christopher Miller
Michael Christopher Miller answered on Aug 26, 2019

One does not decide on a dollar figure.

Va. Code 20-108.1 and 20-108.2 lay out in detail how child support is calculated. Both statutes state that the guideline amount determined by the formula must first be calculated by the judge, and is presumed to be the correct amount of child support.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Virginia on
Q: Is it easier to get a divorce than an anullment? I married someone to help them immigrate, now very ugly

She is from Jordan and is living with me - we have not had any relations. I want her out of my house and out of my life. She is here on a tourist visa. She has two children - she signed a pre nuptial agreement.

Jessica Wildeus
Jessica Wildeus answered on Jul 26, 2019

It is a common misconception that you can get an annulment in Virginia when a marriage hasn't been consummated. The grounds for annulment in this state are very narrow, so it's pretty uncommon.

It is much more common for couples to file for divorce, even if they have had short or...
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1 Answer | Asked in Divorce and Family Law for Virginia on
Q: in a non-community property state, can a spouse obtain your finances for dates post-separation? How is it relevant?

Ongoing divorce, assets are completely separate, both parties worked and have their own accounts. Wife is now seeking my financial information post-date of separation to present. How is that relevant?

Jessica Wildeus
Jessica Wildeus answered on Jul 26, 2019

During a divorce, many couples go through a process called equitable distribution, which is essentially the division of any property owned during the marriage. One or both spouses may also request spousal support (alimony) or child support.

Obtaining financial documents, especially income...
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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Virginia on
Q: How long do you have to respond to Va. code 20-146.26

This notice of request was left on my door, but I can not find a date that I need to respond anywhere.

Michael Christopher Miller
Michael Christopher Miller answered on Jun 20, 2019

Either the order to be registered is the order in effect or it is not. There is no reason to delay disputing the order to be registered if it is not the order in effect.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Personal Injury, Child Custody and Civil Rights for Virginia on
Q: What can I do cps lied

They went into foster care for 5 days were physically abused . They have been taken from the only family that they have ever known .they are traumatized this is all bcuz i am a convicted felon of 15 years ago there is so much to this. I can peove ur all i need help to get them back home where... Read more »

F. Paul Maloof
F. Paul Maloof answered on Jun 12, 2019

I regret that I do not handle family law matters, child abuse law matters or domestic relations law matters. Sorry.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Divorce for Virginia on
Q: FDivorce/family law in VA. Can motions to stay ,reconsider and an appeal be filed for at same time?dead line to file?
Michael Christopher Miller
Michael Christopher Miller answered on Apr 3, 2019

Yes, file all 3.

Orders become final after 21 days, i.e., the judge cannot modify them even if the judge wanted to. So, the motion to stay the finality of the order suspends the 21 day clock to allow more time to rule on the motion to reconsider.

Notice of appeals from circuit court...
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2 Answers | Asked in Contracts, Family Law and Tax Law for Virginia on
Q: What is a valid disclaimer of marital interest in Virginia and how do I go about drafting such a disclaimer?

My wife is in the process of making a business investment, however I as the husband can't be party to the the business and I need to make a disclaimer to that effect. Essentially a disclaimer of marital interest.

James H. Wilson Jr.
James H. Wilson Jr. answered on Mar 30, 2019

Spouses in Virginia can enter into enforceable marital agreements under Virginia Code Section 20-155 of the Virginia Premarital Agreement Act. These agreements take different forms, including prenuptial agreements or antenuptial agreements, marital agreements, separation agreements, stipulations... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody, Criminal Law, Domestic Violence and Family Law for Virginia on
Q: My child father attacked me in front of our child. His 2nd domestic violence charge. Will he get custody/visitation?

I have sole physical & legal custody, visitation reserved to father, at mother’s discretion, since 2017. My child father attacked me when he dropped her off to my home, after having her for the weekend. DV has been an ongoing issue for years, and my daughter show signs to be traumatized. So I... Read more »

Susan Fremit
Susan Fremit answered on Mar 9, 2019

I have moved your question to family law because that is the area of law you have a question about. Domestic violence and criminal law is for those charged with offenses in those areas and requiring answers related to such.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Virginia on
Q: Parents divorcing. 4 year olds custody to be decided. Child regularly says he doesn't want to be with his mother.

I'm in desperate need of help. My best friend is going through a tumultuous custody battle with his soon-to-be ex-wife. He's currently an unemployed single father who's doing the best he can given his situation. Everyday this woman makes it harder and harder on him. We have spoken to multiple... Read more »

Daniel P Leavitt
Daniel P Leavitt answered on Jan 22, 2019

You are going to want to find a local family law lawyer in the jurisdiction where this is taking place and go with the best one. That may very well not be the lowest fee but it may not be the highest fee either. Any good family law lawyer will be able to guide him through the process.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Virginia on
Q: If the father is absent for 9 years and wants visitation is he likely to get it no established relationship

He disappeared when she was 2 years old had nothing to do with her from the time she was born has jump from state to state and is now filing for visitation my daughter has never met this man before we tried going through a mediator and he follows nothing we agree to what are my options I would like... Read more »

Daniel P Leavitt
Daniel P Leavitt answered on Jan 22, 2019

Every court and judge is different. They will look at a number of factors. I don't know what your custody situation is right now but custody and visitation are different. Someone can have sole custody and there can still be a visitation order in place. Generally Virginia law leans towards having... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Real Estate Law and Landlord - Tenant for Virginia on
Q: How long is the unlawful detainer process against a family member, in Virgia Beach?
F. Paul Maloof
F. Paul Maloof answered on Jan 9, 2019

My office is in Alexandria City. I have no experience with Virginia Beach. Sorry.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Real Estate Law and Landlord - Tenant for Virginia on
Q: Can I kick my adult son , his girlfriend and her kids out of my house. They were supposed to leave before Jan 1

My adult son moved in with me after he got out of jail. He does not pay for anything or have a lease. He moved his girlfriend and her kids inand then gave me a sob story when I said for them to leave. A verbal agreement gave them until January 1 to leave and now they will not go. If I cannot... Read more »

F. Paul Maloof
F. Paul Maloof answered on Jan 9, 2019

Generally, family members are not considered tenants, however, if you want to make them vacate the premises, you will have to proceed with the requirements for an unlawful detainer in court since self-help, such as refusing the use of the washer and the kitchen, is prohibited in residential lease... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Support for Virginia on
Q: My support order includes 75% of medical bills. I am getting billed $500 plus a month- it's a struggle. Modification?
James H. Wilson Jr.
James H. Wilson Jr. answered on Dec 19, 2018

Child support orders in Virginia can be modified upon a threshold showing of a material change in financial circumstances. A child support order will normally include responsibility for a parent's income share of medical bills not covered by health insurance. It is not clear from your question... Read more »

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