Child Custody and Visitation in Virginia: Some Final Thoughts

By | February 29, 2012
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Child Custody and Visitation in Virginia:  Some Final Thoughts.  This is the final list of custody and visitation considerations.  We’ll move on to other topics, I promise.  Before I do, however, I wanted to offer a special thanks to David S. Goldberg, Esquire in Maryland.  He is an extremely knowledgable family law attorney and much of this list is drawn from his thoughts on these matters as shared on the listserv he created.


Accessibility to Extended Family

Where are the grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins?

Historical involvement of extended family members


Attitude of Each Parent Regarding Visitation

Who is more likely to allow child continued contact with other parent?

Has a party interfered with visitation with the child?

History of visitation disputes

Telephonic, text, email, web-cam visitation


The Age and Sex of Each Child

Number of children



Level of maturity


Stability and Mental Health of Each Child

Willingness to recognize special needs of child

Special needs of child

How can each parent meet special needs


Munchhausen’s by proxy?


Preservation of Status-Quo

What are the present living arrangement?

How long?

How was living arrangement created, e.g., agree­ment, court order, desertion by one party, etc.


Each Parent’s Plans for Day-to-Day Child Care

Child care arrangements (babysitters)

Daily living pattern (work hours)

Distance from home/school in event of illness


Each Parents Goals and Values for the child

Career goals

Educational goals

Personal goals

Family goals


Religious upbringing

Involvement in civic activities, charities, etc.

Ten Commandments


Potentiality of Maintaining Natural Family Relations

With grandparents

With brothers & sisters (split custody)

How far apart will the parents be living from each other?

Does parent insure that children buy gifts, cards, for child to give to other parent for his/her birthday, Valentine’s Day, Christmas?


Prior Voluntary Abandonment or Surrender

Did parent leave without children?

How often does he/she visit/contact children?


Which Parent Is Best Able to Meet Non- Financial    

Special Needs of Children


Professional Opinions re: Custody




Social Worker

To whom is the child most “bonded” psychologically?

Is parent emotionally dependent on the child?

Is child emotionally dependent on the parent?


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