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Leesburg VA Divorce Law Blog

Figuring out child custody is one of the top divorce priorities

Child custody is a major issue in nearly every case when married parents get divorced. Naturally, most parents want what is best for their children, but they may not agree on what “best for the children” looks like.

So they may disagree on whether to share custody, or if one parent should have sole custody and the other reserves visitation time. Even if they do decide the latter arrangement is best, they could each want to be the parent with custody.

Possibly 1st same-sex divorce case filed in Virginia

The Oct. 6 decision by the U.S. Supreme Court not to hear various challenges to court rulings that recognized the right of same-sex couples to marry had major repercussions for the laws of several states, including Virginia. Locally, the Court’s decision essentially upholds a federal judge’s ruling from January that Virginia’s statute and constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage were unconstitutional.

That means that couples who are of the same gender can get married in Virginia, at least for now. By implication, it also arguably means that those same couples can get divorced later on, and that same-sex couples who got married in a state where such marriages were recognized can also divorce in Virginia.

Soap opera-like Internet commercial has divorce for a theme

Procter & Gamble invented the soap opera genre in the 1930s as a way of promoting its products -- hence the name. Radio shows evolved into daytime television series, which included such legendary shows as “As the World Turns” and “The Young and the Restless.”

Today, companies like P&G try to reach younger customers over the Internet. One online ad created for P&G has become a viral sensation, even though its theme is divorce.

More parents getting help, not jail, for child support debt

In Virginia, if you fall far enough behind in your child support payments, you might go to jail. But some people involved in family law matters are starting to think this is not the best way to get kids the money they deserve for basic necessities.

According to The Washington Post, an emphasis on helping parents find a way to meet their child support obligations is slowly spreading through Virginia. Today, 31 courts in the commonwealth participate in a program that tries to help parents facing jail over child support debt find jobs and whatever other aid they need to solve the problem.

In divorce, some business owners try to plead poverty

Small business remains an important part of the Virginia economy. Many households rely in large part on income generated by a business owned by one or both spouses. If successful, a business can allow a family to live a comfortable, maybe even luxurious, lifestyle.

Still, money cannot buy happiness, and many high-income marriages end in divorce. When that happens, spouses often tend to start thinking about their individual desires rather than what is best for the now-separated couple.

Some interesting -- or strange -- facts about divorce

Here are some interesting studies and trivia related to divorce. Perhaps our readers will gain some insight about their own relationships:

  • In one U.K. survey of people who had been divorced for at least five years or had ended a relationship that long ago, half reported regretting ending things. Around 42 percent said they would consider giving the relationship another shot, if that were a possibility. Perhaps some of those marriages might have been saved, though divorce is the only realistic option in many cases.

What are grounds for divorce in Virginia?

Readers may not realize that there are actually two kinds of divorce under Virginia law. Whether a person qualifies for one type of divorce or the other, and when they legally can file for divorce, depends on their individual circumstances.

"Bed and board" divorce

The first divorce allowed in Virginia is called divorce from "bed and board." This is similar to legal separation, in that the marriage is not completely dissolved, but the spouses live apart and are not allowed to remarry.

Should home-schooling affect child custody rulings?

The standard that family court judges in Virginia use when they have to settle a child support dispute is, what is in the best interests of the child? This focus on the child's safety, health, education and cultural needs has been widely accepted throughout the United States.

Much of the time, determining the best custody arrangement is more of an art than a science. The judge must decide, based in large part on the evidence presented by the parents, whom to grant majority custody.

3 ways to be clear about your desire to get divorced

We may not want to be married to our spouse anymore, but we may still love them in a way, or at least don’t want to hurt their feelings. So if we have decided to get a divorce, perhaps the toughest part is telling our husband or wife.

To try to soften the blow, many people try to make up for the upsetting news. They may give their spouse gifts, spend time with them, even have sex.

How child support is calculated in Virginia

In some ways, divorce in Virginia is more of an art than a science. The spouses must work out a division of assets that is fair and satisfactory to both sides, or the judge will do it for them.

But one common aspect of divorce is subject to a carefully developed formula. In many cases, the divorcing couple has children together. Depending on their individual circumstances, one parent may receive sole or majority child custody, and will seek child support from the other parent.

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