Legal Question in Family Law in Virginia

Temporary custody of niece & nephew

My sister, who lives in arizona, has verbally awarded my family, which lives in virginia, temporary custody of her 3 sons and 1 step-daughter. I do not know if we need court intervention or not. I am searching for legal documentation which would allow us to render medical assistance if necessary and to obtain local financial assistance, as the were recieving this in the state of arizona. Unfortunately i cannot handle all four children so it has been agreed that two of the children will reside with me, 1 with our parents, and the other with our brother & his wife. Do we need 3 seperate agreements or would one specifying me as their temporary guardian be sufficient?

Asked on 8/20/01, 10:46 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

Robert Beard Attorney at Law
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Re: Temporary custody of niece & nephew

You should know that the Attorney General of Virginia has issued an opinion that an agreement transferring custody, as opposed to a court order transferrring custody, is not valid in Virginia. You may read a copy of the opinion by clicking here.

You really need a custody order from either an Arizona or Virginia court. The Virginia court will not have jurisdiction until the children have been here for six months.

Please Note:

The answer to the question above does not constitute the establishment of an attorney-client relationship. The information provided is general in nature, and is not intended to, nor is there any representation that it does, meet your legal needs. You are not being advised to take or not to take any action pursuant to this general information. You are strongly encouraged to obtain the services of legal counsel to pursue any legal rights and remedies you may have. The Virginia Lawyers Referral Service can provide you with a referral to an attorney who will give you an initial one-half hour consultation for a maximum fee of $35. This may prove to be a very valuable investment.

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8/20/01, 2:32 pm

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