Understanding Custody and Relocation Lawyers in Virginia Consider the Best Interests of Children of Divorce

An experienced attorney can guide you through complex military divorce child custody issues

Any child custody issue should revolve around one consideration and one consideration only, and that is the best interests of the child. All courts must consider custody issues based on whatever serves the overall well-being of the children involved. Many factors may need to be considered when making this determination. And when one of the parents involved in the custody dispute serves in the military, those factors can become even more complex.

If you serve in the military and fear that your service may present special child custody issues for you, contact experienced military divorce attorneys like Harding, Harding & Harding Attorneys at Law.

Jurisdiction and relocation due to military service

When a child is relocated by a parent due to military service, jurisdiction can become complicated if custody issues arise. It is even possible that a foreign country could have proper jurisdiction in some cases. But in most cases, the courts of the state in which the parent and child reside permanently will maintain jurisdiction of custody disputes.

Military deployment and child custody

When military parents must serve in a foreign country, they often cede certain custody rights on a temporary basis. But when their overseas service is complete, they may face a difficult custody battle and stay of custody proceeding.

Many times, the other parent files for full custody of the child when the service member leaves a child with a step-parent or other relative during deployment. Since their service makes it difficult to attend or deal with a custody battle, The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act allows military personnel to stay a civil proceeding during their military activation. But many courts do not allow this law to be invoked in child custody cases, claiming that the best interests of the child outweigh federal legal protections provided to military parents.

However, many states find it unfair that military parents should, in effect, be penalized for their military service. These states have passed laws protecting the custody rights of military parents while they are deployed, and prevent any permanent custody changes due to military service. These laws also mandate that any temporary custody changes made due to deployment revert to their original state when the parent returns from a deployment.

Harding, Harding & Harding Attorneys at Law is a knowledgeable Virginia Beach family law firm with broad experience handling military divorce matters.

Virginia military divorce lawyers ready to advise you today

Let Harding, Harding & Harding Attorneys at Law guide you through any matter of Virginia family law. Contact us Contact us online or at 757-499-2600 today to schedule a free consultation regarding your case. We serve clients in Norfolk, Virginia Beach, Chesapeake and surrounding communities.

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"In every case Mr. Harding takes, he strives to provide his clients with the highest level of legal service. If you choose Darrell M. Harding Attorney At Law, PLC to represent you, you can expect to receive experienced legal guidance and be treated with the utmost courtesy and respect at all times."

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  • Virginia Beach Office


    5366 Virginia Beach Boulevard, AAA Building.,
    Suite 301,
    Virginia Beach, Virginia 23462

  • Chesapeake Office


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    Suite L,
    Chesapeake, Virginia 23320



  • Norfolk Office


    1500 E Little Creek Road,
    Suite 309,
    Norfolk, Virginia 23518



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  • yelp

    Darrell did my step-parent adoption in 2022-2023 and we were entirely pleased by his professionalism, his knowledge and his commitment to what he does. He is an attorney that cares about his clients. I would recommend and reuse him in the f...
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    — Alyxzandria H.

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    Darrell Harding took on our very complex case that had been ongoing for years. He is absolutely amazing and knows the law very well. He is also very knowledgeable in military laws and regulations. You cannot put a price on the joy that he b...
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    — Brian R.

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    They handle my divorce in like 2 months and they took payment arrangements they were amazing I appreciate them

    — jezzy 25

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    Mr. Harding was able to get everything I wanted in my case with less than 4 hours notice to be at court as I didn't retain until the day of court. Fantastic lawyer would recommend to anyone in need of an attorney

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    For such a difficult subject, Mr. Harding made this as simple as possible. He never pressured me but guided me to make the best decisions for myself and my child. He also encouraged communication between myself and my ex to settle things mo...
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