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Child Custody

North Carolina Child Custody Lawyers Seek the Best for Your Children

Helping parents find effective custody solutions in Fayetteville

Child custody is perhaps the most frequently litigated issue in family law. Even parents who enjoy an amicable relationship can have a great deal of difficulty ironing out all the complexities of a child custody agreement. In cases involving allegations of abuse, neglect, substance issues, or domestic violence, the stakes could not be higher. Only an experienced attorney can help you make the best decisions for your entire family when it comes to finding a custody arrangement in North Carolina. With their 46 years of combined legal experience, you can trust Devan & Null PLLC with what’s most precious to you — your children.

Types of North Carolina child custody arrangements

Child custody can be the most complex and contentious aspect of family law. It may be difficult to arrive at a final child custody arrangement with your ex, particularly depending on your unique circumstances. However, the general types of common child custody arrangements are fairly simple to grasp: 

  • Joint Legal Custody — In most cases, North Carolina courts strive to give separating parents as much access to their children as possible. With Joint Legal Custody, each parent has a voice in their child’s life.  Often one parent is the primary custodian and the other parent is the secondary custodian with specific visitation privileges.  In some cases, shared physical custody is appropriate. In both situations, there are plenty of details to work out, such as where the child will live during school and which holidays the child will spend with each parent. If the parents cannot agree, a judge must make the decision.
  • Long Distance Joint Custody — In some cases, such as when the separating parents live far away from one another, 50/50 custody may not be practical. These arrangements often end up with the child living with one parent for most of the year and the other parent during the summer or long school breaks. Regardless of the breakdown of physical custody, both parents maintain joint rights to make decisions about the child.
  • Sole custody with visitation — While not generally favored by the courts, sole custody is awarded in some cases, with the other parent entitled to regular periods of visitation. This can occur when one parent does not want custody or when there are concerns about that parent’s ability to care for the child. In extreme cases, the court may order that visitation be supervised. It is very rare for a noncustodial parent to be completely denied visitation.

Because of the many possible complexities and variations in custody decisions, the North Carolina court system strongly encourages — and in many districts, requires — mediation, so that parents, rather than a judge, can resolve custody issues. While custody arrangements are intended to provide stability, they can be modified later if there is a substantial change in circumstances.

Grandparents in North Carolina have broader rights to seek visitation and custody than those in many other states. Nevertheless, the interests of the child are paramount, and the area of Grandparents rights and third party rights is complex. At Devan & Null, our family-focused law firm can help clarify these issues and craft a personalized custody arrangement that satisfies your unique needs. 

Factors affecting custody

Unlike other aspects of a divorce, where the focus is on what is fair and reasonable for each spouse, child custody decisions are determined by what the court believes is in the best interests of the child. A court will consider which parent is in a better position to provide a stable and beneficial home for the child, including living arrangements, income, access to schools, and overall parenting abilities. Allegations of abuse against the child or other spouse are also of paramount consideration. North Carolina courts are directed to consider all relevant factors before making this important decision, and our lawyers can help you mount a compelling case.

Contact our skilled Fayetteville family law attorneys for help with your child custody case

Every North Carolina child custody case is different, and only experience can teach you what to expect. At Devan & Null PLLC, we have that experience. Having spent decades practicing family law and sitting as a family court judge, Laura Devan makes sure her clients are prepared for whatever issues arise during the custody process. Our office is located on Fountainhead Lane in Fayetteville, North Carolina, blocks from the Hay Street exit of US 401. We are available for consultations by appointment from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. to 5 p.m., weekdays. To schedule your consultation with one of our attorneys, call 910-745-6645 or contact us online.


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Our Office
  • North Carolina Office
    103 Fountainhead Lane
    Fayetteville, North Carolina 28301
    Phone: 910-486-6855
    Fax: 910-486-6858
Client Testimonials
  • "Changed My Life:- Laura represented me as a Father in a custody case for my son when he was a baby. My wife had serious issues, but I did not believe a father could win a custody case. Laura tried my case for 5 days and I won primary custody. She focused 100% of her time and energy into preparing and my trying my case. She helped change my life and my now teenage son’s life for the better because of her dedication to my case. "  -John D.

  • "Above And Beyond:- Ms. Devan went above and beyond helping me obtain custody of my son. She is extremely knowledgeable and well versed in child custody law. I am grateful to have had her as an advocate for me in family court. "  -Jay

  • "Truly Amazing:- What a truly amazing attorney! Thank you so much! You took what I thought would be an impossible case and totally walked in and showed them who was in control! Not only did we win big, but I was proud to call you my attorney. Your experience and confidence definitely paid off. I will be sure to refer you to others. "  -Tisha

  • "Tough Attorneys:- Jeff and I played varsity football together for 3 years in high school. I have hired him to handle my legal matters He's as tough in the courtroom as he was on the football field. Jeff had my back and he will have yours. "  -Charles D.