Custody and Visitation Attorneys in West Virginia
Custody and visitation rights are the most critical decisions during divorce hearings that involve children. Depending on you and your spouse’s relationship, they can also be the most challenging and emotional battles of your divorce. While the courts allow couples to come up with their own arrangements, not all spouses can agree on the terms. If your spouse refuses to agree with your desired child custody plan, retain a lawyer immediately. At Johnson Law, our Winfield custody and visitation attorney is passionate about the children’s well-being in divorce cases.
What is Best for Your Children After a Divorce?
Luckily for parents, the family court system no longer gives primary custody to mothers by default. The courts realize that this is not always the best arrangement for the children. Instead, the courts will hear both sides of the case and determine a custody and visitation arrangement based on the children’s best interests. The current trend is to try to split the rights 50/50 whenever possible so that children can enjoy equal time with both parents. However, this is not always appropriate.
No matter what your divorce case involves, ensure that you do not take your feelings out on your children. Do not place your children in the crosshairs of an emotional custody battle, don’t badmouth your spouse in front of your kids, and do not argue in front of them. It is the job of the court to protect children during divorce cases. Our firm recommends always taking the high road. Otherwise, your actions could harm the children and ultimately affect your visitation rights.
How to Create a Custody Plan
You will need to have formally separated or be considering divorce before working out a custody plan. Some couples can work amicably with one another to establish a custody and visitation schedule without an attorney’s help. Often, one spouse may change his or her mind. When children are involved, an experienced child custody attorney is essential.
A custody plan should outline how much time children spend with each parent. It should determine who children stay with during the week when children are at school and who looks after them on weekends. For example, this arrangement could be staying at one parent’s home on alternate weekends or spending the first part of the week with one parent and the second part of the week with the next. It’s also worth determining holidays like Christmas and Thanksgiving when coming up with a visitation schedule.
You and your partner may decide to propose different custody plans. We will help you to fight for your rights if your spouse’s demands are unreasonable. Ultimately, a judge will determine what is the best custody plan by assessing your family’s overall circumstances. Some of the items that a judge will consider include:
- The location and living arrangements of each parent
- The history of each parent (including criminal history and allegations of abuse)
- The physical and mental health of each parent
- The relationship between the parent and child
- And, most importantly, the physical, emotional, and educational needs of your child/children
Can Custody Rights Be Modified?
In West Virginia, each parent can file a request to modify custody. We can help you with this request modification process if you feel that alterations to a custody plan are necessary.
A judge will generally only agree to modify custody rights if there has been a notable change in circumstances. These circumstances could include a long-distance move that inhibits a parent’s ability to see their children or a custodial parent failing to provide adequate care for their children.
Why Choose Johnson Law?
We have helped many couples in Winfield, West Virginia to establish a custody plan. We have an in-depth knowledge of custody law and can answer any queries you may have while guiding you through the process.
For any child custody/visitation proceedings, including requests for modifications or cases in which one parent moves out of state, come to Johnson Law Office in Charleston. We can help you put your best foot forward as a parent. Contact us today for all your legal needs.