Understanding the different types of Child Custody

Written by our divorce lawyers in Virginia Beach

Parents often state that they want “custody” of their children without really understanding what that means.

For more than a decade our divorce lawyers in Virginia Beach have been helping parents understand exactly what all the child custody terms mean and how to navigate the court systems throughout Hampton Roads, including Chesapeake, Norfolk, and Portsmouth.

Before filing a custody petition or negotiating child custody as part of a divorce, make sure you know about the two types of custody.

Legal Custody
First, there is legal custody. Legal custody is where a parent has responsibility for the care and control of the child as well as authority to make decisions concerning the child. Direct communication between a parent and child is not required for legal custody. In the vast majority of cases, parents have joint legal custody. This occurs when both parents retain joint responsibility to ensure the child is cared for as well as to make decisions.

Physical Custody
The second category of custody is physical custody. According to our child custody lawyers in Virginia Beach, physical custody identifies who is responsible for the child on a day-to-day basis. The child lives with the parent that has primary physical custody. It is possible for parents to have joint physical custody, meaning that the child lives with each parent for similar amounts of time.

Awarding physical and legal custody is always governed by what the court considers to be in the best interests of the child. Those “custody factors” may be different than what the parents consider to be important. Therefore, if you are going to pursue a custody matter, it would be wise to consult with experienced child custody lawyers.

Should you wish to meet with one of our child custody lawyers in Virginia Beach for a no-fee consultation about your case, please call us today at (757) 432-2500 or use our online form below.

Divorce lawyers in Virginia Beach serving Chesapeake, Norfolk, Portsmouth, and all of Hampton Roads.

Klein, Rowell & Shall, PLLC is a litigation-focused law firm in Virginia Beach serving Hampton Roads


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