Will a criminal conviction play a role in a custody battle during a Virginia divorce?

An issue that has become a part of modern day society is divorce. Divorce now affects nearly fifty percent of married couples. For some, divorce is simple and easy process; however, this is not the norm. Many divorces involve bitter fights between the couple as struggle over who gets what—and even the children are used as trophies in this war.

A custody battle during a divorce often exposes the worst in the spouses as they fight for the custody they want. What should be done out of love for the child ends in ugliness and bitterness. It is important for both parties involved remember that whatever happens the children should still be put first.

When determining what the custody arrangement will be, there are many factors that may come into play. One of those things is the criminal history. Three crimes that may prevent a parent from gaining custody of a child are:

  • Murder. This is probably the most obvious crime that will affect the custody battle. This category also includes voluntary manslaughter and felony attempted homicide.
  • Felony assault. If the victim of a felony assault resulting in bodily injury or harm was a child of the parent or a child with whom the parent lived with at the time of the assault, custody may not be awarded.
  • Sexual assault. Custody may not be awarded if there was a felony sexual assault with the victim being a child of the parent or a child with whom the parent lived with at the time.


If you are going through a divorce and custody battle, it is important to have an experienced family law attorney on your side. To get learn more simply fill out the contact form found on this page.