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Modification of Custody and Support

The Virginia courts retain jurisdiction to modify custody and visitation determination that relate to a minor child. Case law provides that a party seeking to modify an existing custody order bears the burden of proving that a change in circumstances has occurred since the last custody determination and that the circumstances warrant a change of custody to promote the children’s best interests. See Keel v. Keel, 225 Va. 606, 611-12, 303 S.E.29917, 921 (1983); see also Code § 20-124.2(B). In depending whether to modify a custody order, the trial court’s paramount concern must be the children’s best interests. See Farley v. Farley, 9 Va. App. 326, 327-28, 387 S.E.2d 794, 795-96 (1990).

As a matter of public policy and Virginia Law, the courts also retain jurisdiction to modify any child support and spousal support award when a party proves by a preponderance of the evidence that a material change in circumstances has occurred, and such material change justifies a modification in the support award (e.g. the modification would be in the child’s best interest).

Likewise, unless the parties enter an agreement to the contrary, the Court may modify a spousal support award based on a material change of circumstance that warrants modification. See Virginia Code Section §20-109 (1950, as amended).

We use our litigation and negotiation expertise to help clients resolve their support modification issues.

The attorneys at ROOP XANTTOPOULOS BABOUNAKIS will bring their experience, empathy and talent to work for the best interests of you and your family. If you would like to request an appointment, please contact our family law firm by calling 703.442.0040, or by sending us an email.

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