Nesting custody arrangements can be beneficial to kids

On Behalf of | Feb 1, 2024 | Child Custody

Imagine a scenario where kids of divorce can stay in one familiar home instead of packing up and moving from residence to residence so frequently. If this sounds like a post-divorce dream situation, your family could be an ideal candidate for a nesting (or birdnesting) child custody plan.

But what does nesting mean? Is it an option in Virginia? What are the risks and rewards? Here we’ll answer these and other questions about birdnesting.

What does nesting entail?

In custody arrangements based on birdnesting, the parents are the ones who move between home instead of the children. That means your kids need not be uprooted when it is time to exchange custody.

Can Virginia parents implement a nesting plan?

Yes. There is no law that requires parents to provide two separate homes for their children after a divorce. As long as your custody arrangements serve the best needs of your kids, it will likely pass muster with the judge.

What are some pros and cons of birdnesting?

As mentioned, nesting can preserve the stability of children, which may be particularly beneficial as they are adjusting to a new family dynamic. Other possible advantages include the following:

  • It minimizes post-divorce emotional and logistical upheaval.
  • Parents may get more parenting time.
  • It helps children continue to feel a sense of family unity.

A few potential drawbacks of nesting include these:

  • It can be financially difficult to maintain two households.
  • Parents may feel trapped or that privacy is compromised.
  • It could increase the risks of confrontation or conflict.

Of course, every child custody plan or court order can pose some disadvantages, so do not rule out birdnesting if you think it could work for your family, at least for a time. With experienced legal guidance, you can learn more birdnesting and other alternatives that may better serve your family.



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