Understanding Child Custody And Parenting Time
The most important thing in your world is your children. At Beckman Schmalzle Georgelas & Ross, PLC, we understand this bond and the anxiety you may have regarding how a divorce will change your time and relationship with your children. We are here to help.
Getting Resolution In Emotional Issues
Child custody and visitation are very often the most emotional and contested issues litigated in a divorce case. There does not need to have ever been a marriage, however, for the court to determine custody and visitation.
We handle cases that involve a multitude of issues, including physical abuse, sexual abuse, protective orders, mental illness, and incapacity of both parents and children. We can help you if your child has developmental disabilities and special needs. We are also experienced in multistate litigation involving the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (the UCCJEA). We know you want the best for your child. We do, too.
Types Of Custody
There are two basic types of custody: legal and physical. These can be sole, where one parent has total authority and responsibility, or joint (sometimes called shared), where parents share authority and responsibility. The amount of time the child spends with each parent can affect child support payments.
Legal custody: It is the obligation and right of a parent to make decisions regarding the child’s life. These types of decisions can include where the child goes to school, what type of medical care should the child receive and the religious upbringing of the child.
Physical custody: It refers to where or with whom the child will live. A child may live primarily with one parent and then have visitation with the other. Or, parents may share physical custody where the child will split their time between two homes.
Visitation And Modifications To Custody Plans
Visitation is the time that the noncustodial parent (the parent that the child does not primarily live with) spends with the child. Visitation is determined by assessing what is in the child’s best interest, not what is in the parents’ best interest. We have extensive experience establishing, modifying, and enforcing custody and visitation orders.
Your child custody arrangement can be changed or “modified.” You will need to show a “material change in circumstances.” There are no hard and fast rules about what a material change in circumstances is, but if the hours or requirements of your job significantly change, if you move closer or farther away, or if your health improves or deteriorates, these may warrant modifying the visitation or custody agreement. As attorneys with extensive experience in a wide variety of family law issues, we have the knowledge and skill to help you.
Work With A Team That Believes You Matter
At Beckman Schmalzle Georgelas & Ross, we know that what is at stake in child custody and visitation cases is not only your well-being but also the well-being of your children. Call 703-659-6875 to speak with a member of our team about your situation. You can also reach out to us via this website’s contact email.