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West Virginia House committee moves to further study custody bill

By TAYLOR STUCK

The Herald-Dispatch

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — After hearing from the lead sponsor and Cabell County Family Court Judge Patricia Keller, a West Virginia House of Delegates committee on Thursday recommended further study of a bill that would restructure how custody agreements are done in the state.

The goal of the bill, said lead sponsor Del. Geoff Foster, R-Putnam, is to ensure children get appropriate time with both parents, which studies show improves the life of the child.

The bill requires that courts grant 50-50 custody to parents during divorce proceedings, unless there is clear and convincing evidence a 50-50 split is not in the best interest of the child, among other changes. Foster said his intention is to move closer to 50-50 instead of removing custody from the get-go of divorce proceedings.

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