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Legal Information: Virginia


December 4, 2020

If the judge denies a request for custody, does s/he have to explain why?

Virginia law requires that the judge communicate the reasons for his/her decision, either in person or in writing. If the judge did not do this at the hearing, you may want to contact his/her court assistant to ask for an explanation in writing.1

However, the judge does not have to explain every aspect of his/her decision-making process in detail, only the main reasons for the decision.2

1 Va. Code § 20-124.3
2 See Kane v. Szymczak, 585 S.E.2d 349, 353 (Va. App. 2003)