Who Decides on Child Custody & Visitation Arrangements?

By Barkat Law Firm

Going through a divorce may be a troubling experience. It gets even more stressful when it also involves children. For parents, the biggest worry during a divorce case is about custody or a visitation arrangement. Through the help of an attorney for child custody DC residents have come to trust, you can ensure to go through the process with ease. Here are a few points on how these arrangements are made, and why you need a child custody attorney to represent you and your child’s interests. Here is some information on how a DC child custody attorney can help you, and how you can seek services for child custody in DC.

Who Can Decide on Custody & Visitation?

If you and the other parent can come to an agreement on what custody and visitation should be you will not need a court to decide that for you. If you cannot reach an agreement you will need to file a custody case in court to ask a Judge to decide custody and visitation.

A court in a child/children’s home state is the court that will be able to make custody and visitation determinations in custody cases. Home state means the state where the child has been residing for the preceding six months prior to the filing of a custody case. This is crucial to know in the Washington, DC area where it is common for one parent and child to live in Washington, D.C. and the other party residing in Maryland or Virginia, or vice versa.

Process of Decision in Court

When parents cannot agree on a custody agreement, they hire an attorney for child custody. This attorney presents their case to the court. The court then considers various factors before granting custody to either parent.

There are 17 of such factors that are defined in the law. They range from the child’s age to their relationship with the parent. All of these factors are considered as being in the best interest of the child.

According to DC law, both parents should be able to share their child’s custody. But this doesn’t necessarily apply to a case where a parent has demonstrated neglect or abuse towards their child.

A court order is final and has to be complied with. But the parent who has lost the physical custody is still often provided with a visitation arrangement.

How Parents Can Decide an Arrangement

As noted above, a court doesn’t always have to decide the custody for a child. Parents who agree on a custody arrangement can present it to the court through a child custody attorney.

The court is favorable towards mutually agreed custody and visitation arrangements. Therefore they are formalized quite easily if you have a proficient attorney at your side.

Benefits of a Child Custody Attorney

A child custody attorney can help you with court-ordered custody as well as mutually-agreed custody agreements. Filing for modification after court-ordered custody? Or are you seeking to approve your pre-agreed arrangements in the court? Whatever the case may be, an experienced attorney would be able to help you every step of the way.

At Barkat Law, you can seek professional help with custody and visitation arrangements through our experienced, reliable and credible legal services. Whether you need more information on the process or want to retain the services of an attorney for child custody in the DC area, reach out to us today at 202-276-1167 and request your initial consultation.