Manassas Child Custody Attorney

Determining child custody can be one of the most emotional and hotly contested issues of a divorce. If you are a parent facing a divorce in Manassas, or an unmarried parent with a child custody issue to resolve, the Manassas child custody attorneys at Collins Family Law are here to help. Our family law attorneys will listen to the particulars of your case and provide experienced legal counsel and guidance through a settlement agreement or court process. We have a track record of success and great client reviews. Call our Manassas family law attorneys today to set up a case consultation.

Understanding Child Custody Laws in Manassas, Virginia

Child custody laws are a complex and long process. They can include child visitation, child support, and other complicated laws. Virginia in particular prioritizes the best interests of the child, aiming to ensure their well-being and stability. The custody of a child can be awarded as sole or joint, which decides where the child will live and how they will be raised. Virginia courts take into account a few key factors when deciding custody including the child’s age, health, emotional connection to each parent, and the parent’s ability to take care of the child.

Unlike in some states, Virginia does not require an age for a child to make a custody decision. Instead, their maturity and intelligence are evaluated before. Gaining an understanding of these laws can greatly improve your chances of securing favorable custody arrangements for your child. Contact a knowledgeable Manassas child custody lawyer to get started on your case and get any questions answered.

Why Choose a Manassas Child Custody Lawyer from Collins Family Law?

At Collins Family Law, we have a deep understanding of Virginia’s child custody laws as well as the deeply personal nature of a parent’s relationship with their child. As parents, we understand the distress of bringing a court into this special relationship.

Our Manassas child custody lawyers provide the following assistance in child custody cases:

  • Family law attorneys with years of experience navigating Virginia child custody cases and family law cases under a wide array of circumstances
  • An in-depth knowledge of workable child custody schedules to meet nearly any situation with a creative solution
  • Extensive experience in all nuances of parental rights according to Virginia law
  • A resolution-based approach that always seeks the least amount of contention in a child custody case, while always working to protect our client’s interests and goals

When it comes to your children, cutting corners isn’t an option. You need a skilled child custody attorney to safeguard your rights throughout your child custody case.

How Is Child Custody Determined in Virginia?

Under Virginia Code § 20-124.3, family courts uphold the standard of deciding all child custody cases in the best interests of the child. Child custody in Virginia is divided into a few types of custody – physical custody—where the child resides—and legal custody—the right to make important decisions for the child’s care and education.

There is no presumption in favor of mothers or fathers. Custody is determined based on the child’s best interests, including the following:

  • A child’s age and physical and mental health condition
  • The physical and mental health of each parent
  • Each parent’s role in raising the child, including the amount of daily involvement in care and the ability to assess and meet a child’s needs
  • Each parent’s willingness to facilitate a relationship between the child and the other parent
  • The child’s needs in the context of peers and extended family members
  • The child’s preference if they are of a reasonable age and understanding to express a preference
  • Any history of abuse and other factors the court considers important in deciding within the child’s best interest

What Makes a Parent Unfit for Custody in Virginia?

Custody disputes can be exceptionally challenging, with the court’s primary focus being the best interests of the child. A parent may be deemed unfit for custody if they are unable to fulfill their responsibilities as a caretaker. This determination can prevent the parent from being awarded custody and may also restrict their visitation rights.

Criteria for Determining Parental Fitness:

  • Substance Abuse: A history of drug or alcohol abuse can severely impact a parent’s ability to provide a safe and stable environment for the child.
  • Neglect or Abuse: Evidence of past child neglect or abuse is a critical factor in deeming a parent unfit.
  • Mental Health Issues: A mental condition that impairs the parent’s ability to care for and protect the child can disqualify them from obtaining custody.
  • Inability to Provide Basic Needs: Failing to provide proper food, shelter, or other basic necessities for the child can be grounds for losing custody rights.
  • Lack of Cooperation: A parent who is unwilling to work collaboratively with the other parent or comply with court orders may be deemed unfit.
  • Disengagement: Not showing a willingness to be involved in the child’s life can also contribute to a parent being considered unfit for custody.

The court evaluates these factors to make sure that the child’s well-being and safety are prioritized in any custody arrangement.

How Can a Manassas Child Custody Lawyer Help?

At Collins Family Law, our Manassas divorce attorneys will analyze the facts and circumstances of your particular situation and advise you on your options. We want our clients to make educated decisions about whether to accept a settlement offer or proceed with asking a judge to decide the case. We also don’t charge unless we win the case and offer free consultation for your case, making us completely risk-free.

Call the Manassas Child Custody Lawyers at Collins Family Law Today

Your Manassas child custody attorneys from Collins Family Law are ready to guide you through your child custody case with meticulous attention to detail and assertive advocacy for your desired outcome and your child’s best interests. Call our Manassas family law office today so that we can begin prompt action in your case.