Child Custody and Visitation




Professional Representation by Children Advocate


Child custody is one of the most contested areas of family law.  In child custody and visitation matters the judge has a lot of leeway in resolving these issues.  The judge’s decisions ultimately must be based on the “best interests of the child.”   Under Virginia law anyone “with legitimate interest” may petition for custody or visitation.


In Virginia there are essentially two main kinds of custody:


Joint Custody: 1.)  Joint legal custody where both parents retain joint responsibility for the care and control of the child and joint authority to make decisions concerning the child even though the child’s primary residence may be with only on parent; 2.)  Joint physical custody where both parents share physical and custodial care of the child; or 3.)  Any combination of joint legal and physical custody which the court deems to be in the best interest of the child.


Sole Custody:  A parent or other person retains responsibility for the care and control of a child and has primary or sole authority to make decisions concerning the child.


Once custody is determined and a parent is awarded sole physical custody or given primary physical custody (the child will reside with that parent), the judge must determine the scope of visitation by the other parent.  The judge has the duty to assure minor children of frequent and continuing contact with both parents, when appropriate, and encourage parents to share in the responsibilities of rearing their children.  Visitation by the non-custodial parent, barring negative circumstances, may take on many variations, including visiting with the children every other weekend, one evening for several hours during the week that there is no weekend visitation, alternating holidays, alternating or split school vacations, (Spring and Winters vacations)  and a portion of the summer.  In the event that there is an extreme geographic distance between the respective parental households, or situations where violence, abuse or neglect exist then visitation may be limited and/or supervised.


For many years Mr. Kavrukov has successfully handled numerous custody and visitation disputes for his clients-ranging from the relatively routine to the complex.  Once you become his client he will respond with a legal strategy designed to achieve your goals of custody or visitation.  He regularly works with child psychologists, custody evaluators, and other experts to help his clients obtain a successful outcome of your custody or visitation goals.          


Custody and visitation are never permanently settled.  Should there be significantly changed  circumstances from the last court order, and change in custody or visitation is in the best interests of the child, the court retains the power to alter the custody and visitation until the child turns 18 or is emancipated.









Child Custody & Visitation 


Child and Spousal Support  

Property Division

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