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Lawmakers Advance Virginia Family Law Coalition Proposals

Tuesday, March 13, 2018   (0 Comments)
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With the regular General Assembly session concluded for 2018, except for budget negotiations, here is the outcome of legislation backed by VBA affiliated group the Virginia Family Law Coalition, according to Jeffrey S. Palmore, legislative counsel for the VBA:

 

HB 289: Divorce proceedings; transfer of case for modification.

Patron: Delegate Chris Collins

This bill provides that after the entry of a decree of divorce the circuit court shall not (i) transfer a case for modification to the J&DR court in the absence of a motion by either party or (ii) require a provision for transfer of matters for modification to the J&DR district court as a condition of entry of a decree of divorce. The bill modifies the provision allowing transfer of any matters covered by the divorce decree to a juvenile and domestic relations district court to add transfer to any circuit court that constitutes a more appropriate forum.

The bill passed the House and the Senate and was approved by the Governor (Acts of Assembly Chapter 254) on March 9, 2018. It will become effective July 1, 2018.

 

SB 540: Spousal support; modification when person reaches retirement age.

Patron: Senator Emmett Hanger

This bill would provide that for the purposes of petitioning the court for a modification of spousal support, the payor spouse reaching full retirement age pursuant to the federal Social Security Act shall be considered a material change in circumstances.

It passed the House and Senate and is awaiting action by the Governor.

 

HB 278: Compensation guardian ad litem appointed to represent a child; adjustment by the court.

Patron: Delegate Chris Collins

This bill would provide that a court may adjust the costs of a guardian ad litem's services for good cause shown or upon the failure of the guardian ad litem to substantially comply with the standards adopted for attorneys appointed as guardians ad litem.

It passed the House and Senate and is awaiting action by the Governor.

 

SB 981: Child support; calculation of obligation, multiple custody arrangements.

Patrons: Senator Glen Sturtevant and Delegate Jay Leftwich

This bill establishes methods by which child support obligations can be calculated when multiple custody arrangements exist between parents of children subject to child support orders.

This bill and an identical House version, HB 1361, were approved by the House and the Senate. They were approved by the Governor (Acts of Assembly Chapters 21 & 191) and will become effective on July 1, 2018.

 

HB 277: Guardians ad litem for children; report requirements, certification form.

Patron: Delegate Chris Collins

This bill would have required guardians ad litem appointed to represent a child in a matter to conduct an investigation in compliance with certain standards.

The bill passed the House but was continued to the 2019 General Assembly session by the Senate Courts Committee.


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