When you and your child’s other parent are no longer in a relationship but both wish to continue to parent your shared child, you may need to have Virginia’s court system determine custody terms for you. When making decisions about where your son or daughter should live and when the court system makes decisions it believes to be in your child’s best interests.
Per the Code of Virginia, some of the variables the courts consider when making decisions about child custody are as follows.
Age, physical and mental condition
Your child’s age and needs respective to his or her age fall under the microscope in a Virginia child custody case, as do you and your former partner’s ages as they relate to your abilities to care for your minor child. The physical and mental conditions of everyone involved in the custody case are also relevant.
Existing relationships between parties
How much of an existing relationship you and your child’s other parent have with your son or daughter is also a consideration. If one of you was the primary caretaker of your child while the other took a backseat, this may factor in during your custody case. The strength of any relationships that exist between your child and other siblings, and where those siblings reside, may also carry weight.
Parental cooperation history
Your chances of having custody or visitation rights over your child may improve if you show an ability to cooperate with the other parent. This might include encouraging communications between your ex and your child when your son or daughter is in your care.
These are some of the areas that may come into play during a Virginia child custody case. However, many other areas may also hold relevance.