For many couples in Virginia, it is difficult to come to an agreement regarding how to best raise their children. Unfortunately, this is even more difficult for couples who are going through or contemplating a divorce. Fortunately, decisions regarding child custody and support do not have to be contentious; knowing what to expect can help ease the process and reduce tension surrounding these conversations.
The first thing to understand is the different types of custody. Decisions regarding both physical and legal custody can be made. Physical custody deals with whom the child lives with while legal custody deals with who has decision-making ability regarding the children at issue.
A court can issue a ruling for either sole or joint custody. Regardless of strongly held beliefs, courts cannot render a decision based on a person’s gender, race, financial status or physical ability — many people believe that mothers are often favored over fathers. The most important consideration when it comes to decisions regarding child support and custody is what is in the best interest of the children.
Some people in Virginia live with the misconception that proceedings regarding child custody are inherently contentious. However, there are options that will allow parents to make child custody and other decisions outside of the courtroom. Having an experienced attorney explain the options can help a parent fully understand the path before them and take action that will ultimately be in the best interest of their children, perhaps without having to ask a judge to issue a decision in the matter.