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Military Divorce Attorneys Newport News VA: Child Custody

Where the children are presently is a big consideration of the courts in Newport News Virginia when determining which parent will be granted custody. Courts simply do not like to take the responsibility for moving the children. The “inertia factor” is the strongest of all, as it furnishes an excuse for a disposition that, should it turn out badly, is less likely to be blamed on the judge.

Who has had the child for the longest recent period is a more sophisticated refinement of the “inertia factor” by the courts in Newport News Virginia. The more perceptive judges will discount very-recently-acquired “possession” of the children, so as to avoid endorsing the view that possession is 9/10ths of custody law.

Specific nurturing responsibilities and involvements and who has done exactly what parenting chores with and for the child over the last few years is also taken in to consideration by the courts in Newport News Virginia. This is something easily lied about and hard to prove.

Stability is a major consideration of Courts in Newport News and evidence of steady, even temper and dull predictability is helpful. Long tenure in one residence and one job is very helpful, and in contrast a series of jobs, or of addresses, hurts.

Possession of former family home is helpful, as it affords the children some continuity and it counts more if the children have not left it.

Unselfishness, or ability to place the child’s needs first will be given considerable weight by the courts in Newport News Virginia when determining which parent will receive custody. We have recently come through a decade that glorified selfishness, and invented scores of euphemisms for it, but it is a quality that judges frequently zero in on – especially in the all-too-frequent case where the parents seem equally fit and a tie-breaker is needed. Many close custody decisions today turn on which parent demonstrated a tendency to place other interests — usually career or new romantic relationships — ahead of the child.

New romantic relationships can be a factor in a parent not being granted custody by the courts. Also, there is a definite line between the mere taking on of a new partner — which is usually approved as showing a healthy realism and re-stabilizing influence — and sexual conduct witnessed by the child. Adultery, fornication or cohabitation in the same household where the child is staying – even if the child does not witness it – is frowned on by judges, and sometimes by the other parent.

Child custody is decided based on “the best interests of the child” in Virginia. The real sub-criteria of this decision seem to be essentially these:

Employment, stable and consistent, is a major factor used by the courts to determine which parent receives custody of the child/ children in Newport News Virginia. This can present a problem for active duty military at times though, and the deployment status of the parent will be given consideration. Also, it is better to have employment, though not employment that creates a child-care problem. The parent having a job with flexible hours and near the child has a definite advantage.

A consistent plan for the child should be made prior to the custody battle.The parent who wants to win a custody contest should always tell the judge that he or she has a daily plan covering every minute of the day, with no gaps in child care during which the child would be alone somewhere.

Tendency to afford full contact with the other parent and foster good relationships between the children and the other parent, will be closely looked at by the judge in Newport News Virginia when making a custody determination. Attacking the other party in a trial shows the judge a poor prognosis as to this point. Thus it should, to the extent it is avoidable, be avoided in favor of showing the advantages of the client retaining custody. You should be able to say something good about the other parent and something disadvantageous about yourself. You will also want to be able to describe what visitation you would want to afford the other parent were you to gain custody, and what visitation you will desire if you are not granted custody.

Being the primary caregiver during the child’s early years, is a big plus for the parent seeking custody of their children in Newport News Virginia. Courts. If the child has special needs, the court will almost always grant custody to the party that has been providing care.

Assuring the child’s safety may seem like a no brainer, but the Judge in Newport News Virginia does not want to take the risk of harm coming to a child. The parent who can provide the child with a safe and secure neighborhood, a safe walk to school, fenced yard, detached house, etc., will gain favor in a custody hearing.

Continued contact with extended family, should be given more consideration than it does in Virginia Courts, however it will be looked at heavily in cases where one parent may be active duty military. Continued contact with the extended family — especially grandparents, and more especially the in-law grandparents — is an important part of ensuring that the best interest of the children is met. Remember, many judges are grandparents themselves.

Larger living quarters can be a plus and a parent seeking custody of their child should certainly make their Divorce Attorney in Newport News VA aware that they have a larger home for the child. Though courts constantly say that they avoid comparing the material advantages, their decisions show that they favor a large home — particularly one with a separate bedroom for the child.

The child’s performance and stability while with each parent will also be given great consideration by the court system in Newport News Virginia.How the child’s grades and other measures of performance change when with each parent is important in determining the child’s best interests.

The child’s preference, depending on age, will be given consideration, and this is typically done through the Guardian Ad Litem appointed by the court in Newport News VA to represent the best interest of the child. Above age 13, the judge will probably regard preference as controlling. Age 8-13 judge will probably want to interview a child. Judges may occasionally be curious to meet children ages 6-8 for special reasons.

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