Custody Awards

Upon the request of either party at a hearing after notice or service of process, the court shall consider and award temporary custody of minor children and establish visitation rights.

If you are the defendant in a DVPO or 50B case, this may be extremely important, since you may otherwise have a very hard time seeing your children pending a child custody action in Family Court.

A temporary child custody order entered as part of a DVPO or 50B is for a fixed period of time and shall not exceed one year.  This hearing is without prejudice to either party and any subsequent custody order entered under Chapter 50 (through regular Family Court) will supersede any order entered as part of the DVPO or 50B.  This means that, as a defendant, while this order can be valid for up to a year, it would be important to also pursue a custody action in regular Family Court as soon as you are able to after the DVPO or 50B hearing.