What It Means:

In Virginia, "physical custody" refers to where a child resides and with whom (parent, foster parent, grandparent, etc.).

"Legal custody" refers to who has decision making authority over a child's health, welfare, education needs and other matters.

Both types of custody can be either:
"sole" - with one person for the child (typically a parent) or
"joint or shared" - with more than one person for the child (typically both parents).

Many issues confront persons facing a divorce. Those issues include property rights, financial obligations to creditors, tax consequences, spousal support, and, most importantly, issues related to custody of minor children and child support. It is important and wise to educate yourself about these issues before making decisions involving divorce.

We strongly encourage people to have at least an initial consultation with an attorney. Find out what your rights and obligations are before you make decisions that will affect the rest of your life, as well as the lives of your children and others. Call us at (540) 731-4440 to learn more.


In almost all matters involving children, the overriding public policy considerations remain promotion of the best interests and welfare of the children. Adoptions often include consideration of voluntary or involuntary limitation, relinquishment, or termination of parental rights as well as various forms of adoption (such as direct, agency, special needs, close relative, adult, etc.) and therefore, require knowledge of legal practice and procedure. Issues regarding consent, contact and communication after adoption, inheritance rights, and foster parent rights frequently occur as well.

Before you adopt or give up your parental rights, get legal counsel, advice and direction from an attorney at AJS Law.

Wytheville Office: 170 S. 16th Street • Wytheville, VA 24382 • Local: (276) 228-0944 • Fax: (276) 223-0047 •
Radford Office: 7472 Lee Highway • Radford, VA 24141 • Local: (540) 731-4440 • Fax: (540) 731-0040
Email: admin@AJSLawVirginia.com