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From Experienced Charleston Family Law Attorneys

Tips for preparing for a custody hearing in West Virginia

On Behalf of | Jul 13, 2022 | Child Custody

Of course, your child needs both parents, especially during their development stages and years beyond. But there are circumstances where it is in their best interest if you win full custody. The West Virginia family court may not see the reason why this is important unless you show them by taking advantage of the following tips.

Start by understanding West Virginia’s child custody laws

The first step is to educate yourself on West Virginia’s child custody laws. The state uses a “best interest of the child” standard when making custody, visitation and support decisions. They will consider factors such as, but not limited to:

• The mental and physical health of all involved parties

• Which parent is more likely to encourage a relationship between the child and the other parent

• Evidence of domestic violence or abuse

• The child’s adjustment to their home, school, and community

Know what makes a better parent in the eyes of the law

While the court does consider the wishes of both parents, they will also look at which parent can provide a more stable home environment for the child. For example, if you have joint custody but one parent lives in a dangerous neighborhood or constantly moves around, the court may award primary custody to the other parent.

Bring the right documents to the court hearing

Besides birth certificates and proof of residency and employment, it is also essential to bring a copy of your proposed parenting plan. This document should outline how you and the other parent will share custody of your child and how visitation will be scheduled. And if there were any cases of drug abuse or violent behaviors, you should also bring evidence to show why you think the other parent is unfit to get custody of your children.

Child custody is a battle. However, it is important to ensure your resolutions are best for your child and not some sort of vengeance against your ex.