State Laws

These charts provide an overview of state-specific child protection and child custody laws in the context of domestic violence including applicable statute numbers and statutory language. They are intended for educational and research purposes only. If you would like the Resource Center on Domestic Violence: Child Protection and Custody to develop a customized chart on a specific child protection or child custody law, please contact us (800) 527-3223.

Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA): Domestic Violence-Specific Sections
This chart sets forth the domestic violence specific sections of CAPTA, the U.S. Code Citation, and the statutory language.
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Child Custody - Domestic Violence as a Factor
This chart sets forth the states that give domestic violence extra weight in the best interest of the child analysis, and the states where domestic violence is an exception to considering certain best interest of the child factors.
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Child Custody - Rebuttable Presumptions
This chart sets forth the states that have a rebuttable presumption that sole or joint physical or legal custody is not in the best interest of the child and should not be awarded to a perpetrator of domestic violence.
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Child Custody or Visitation with a Registered Sex Offender
This chart looks at whether a registered sex offender can be awarded child custody or visitation.
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Child Custody when One Parent is on Military Deployment
This chart sets forth the states with custody provisions specific to military deployment, and  the states that include a domestic violence specific provision(s).
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Children's Exposure to Domestic Violence Constitutes Child Abuse and/or Neglect
This chart sets forth states the include children's exposure to domestic violence in their definitions of child abuse and/or neglect.
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Conditions on Visitation in Cases Involving Domestic and Family Violence
This chart sets forth the states that place conditions on visitation for cases involving domestic and family violence.
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Domestic Violence as Changed Circumstance to Modify Custody / Visitation
This chart sets forth the states where domestic violence is considered a changed circumstance to modify custody or visitation.
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Duties of CPS in Domestic Violence Cases
This chart sets forth the states that have statutory duties for children's protective services in domestic violence cases.
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Judicial Ethics:  A State-by-State Compilation
This compilation contains selected judicial ethics advisory opinions that address community participation by judges to end domestic violence.
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Mandatory Domestic Violence Training for Child Protection Service (CPS) Professionals
This chart sets forth the states that statutorily require mandatory domestic violence training for CPS professionals.
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Mandatory Domestic Violence Training for Judges
This chart sets forth the states that require mandatory domestic violence training for judges.
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Mediation Where Domestic Violence is Present
This chart sets forth the states that mandate mediation in child custody cases, that have a domestic violence ban or opt-out, and that have exceptions to mediation or mediation only with protective conditions, and sets forth who can mediate.
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Relocation - Domestic Violence as a Factor
This chart sets forth the states where relocating because of domestic violence is a factor in determining residence. It also sets forth the states where a parent's absence or relocation because of domestic violence is not weighed against the parent in determining custody or visitation.
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State Definitions of Domestic Violence
This chart sets forth each state's definition of domestic violence, including the U.S. Territories of Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands.
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Supervised Visitation - Presumptions
This chart sets forth states that have presumptions for ordering supervised visitation in domestic violence cases.
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Termination of Parental Rights of Only One Parent
This chart sets forth the states that allow for the termination of parental rights of only one parent.
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