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DIVORCE & FAMILY LAW
Your Manassas Divorce & Family Lawyer
At Khanna Law, we represent clients in Manassas, Woodbridge, Gainesville, and all across Prince William County.
The combined court system of Manassas-Prince William County differs substantially from jurisdictions like Fairfax and Loudoun County. We help our clients by guiding them through the complex court procedures and providing them sound legal advice for their divorce, custody and child support cases.
MANASSAS / PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY DIVORCE CASES
If you are a Manassas or Woodbridge resident, have been separated for one year or more, or you have fault grounds for divorce, then Prince William County Circuit Court may have jurisdiction over your case.
Once you file a complaint for divorce (whether on fault or no-fault basis), the opposing party will be served with the summons and a copy of the divorce complaint. The service of summons and complaint is performed either by the Prince William County Sheriff’s office or by a private process server that you retain. The Defendant (opposing party) will have 21 days from the date of service to file his or her answer to the complaint.
Depending on the facts of your case, you may need the Court to provide temporary resolution for some issues in your case as the court may not be able to hold a final divorce trial for several months.
These issues regarding temporary custody, visitation, child support, and, spousal support, are usually heard during a Pendente Lite Motions hearing. Prince William County’s motions docket is held every Friday at 10 a.m. A two-week notice is required to be provided to the opposing party before a pendente lite motions’ hearing. Keep in mind, that only motions that can be heard in 30 minutes or less are scheduled for the Friday motions’ docket.
Motions that take longer than 30 minutes can be scheduled by contacting the Judge’s chambers or by appearing at the Friday motions’ docket.
MANASSAS / PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY CHILD SUPPORT
If you are a resident of Manassas or other parts of Prince William County, the establishment of a Child Support Order can be accomplished either by an independent petition in the Prince William County Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court, or, in the Prince William County Circuit Court as part of a divorce case. During a hearing to establish child support, a court will evaluate the evidence presented which usually includes evidence regarding parties’ income, monthly health insurance cost of the child, monthly work-related childcare cost etc., and issue a Child Support Order if warranted. At that time, the court may also put into place a mechanism for enforcement of the Child Support Order.
The Court will also order any back child support owed (calculated from the time a child support petition or divorce petition requesting child support was filed), also known as child support arrears if any is owed.
The determination of child support is different for every family and even for each child within a family. Courts will look to set child support in an amount sufficient to provide for a child’s necessary expenses, which include food, shelter, clothing, education, and health care. Courts in Prince William County and rest of Virginia use the Code of Virginia’s Child Support Guidelines to set the amount of support based upon the parent’s income, time with the child, and other financial matters.
CUSTODY, VISITATION & FAMILY LAW CASES IN MANASSAS / PRINCE WILLIAM COUNTY:
If you are a resident of Manassas, Woodbridge, Gainesville, etc., most likely Prince William County Juvenile Domestic Relations Court or Circuit Court will have jurisdiction over your custody and visitation case.
After a thorough consultation, we can determine which Prince William County Court will have jurisdiction over your case and make the appropriate filing.
If your custody & visitation case is filed in the Prince William County Juvenile & Domestic Relations District Court, the “Respondent”, who is the opposing party or the other parent will be served with summons and a copy of the custody & visitation petition. The service will be performed by the sheriff or a private process server. Both parties (Petitioner & Respondent) will also get a notice of hearing for your first status hearing.
At your first status hearing, the judge will most likely authorize discovery and also schedule a trial date. If you have any immediate issues to be decided by the Court, then you will have to file a motion which will be heard by the Court on its’ motion’s day.
In making the custody determination, the Court has to consider what is in the best interest of the child. In order to determine what is in the best interest of a child, the Court takes various factors into account (outlined by VA Code Section 20-124.3). Factors considered by the court in determining the best interest of the child include age, physical, and mental health of the parents; age of the child; the existing relationship between each parent and the child; the needs of the child; the role played by each parent in the child’s upbringing and care; the Child’s wishes (if of sufficient age, intelligence and maturity); and, the ability of each parent to foster a strong relationship between the child and the non-custodial parent. The Court also considers the ability of each parent to resolve any dispute regarding the child.
KHANNA LAW – YOUR MANASSAS CUSTODY, CHILD SUPPORT & DIVORCE LAWYER
At Khanna Law, we represent clients in their custody, child support, divorce and family law matter from Manassas, Woodbridge, and every other part of Prince William County. Call our award-winning attorney at (571)766-6860 to schedule a consultation regarding your custody, child support, or, divorce case today.