Overview to Visitation
There are no reported cases of a court honoring complete denial of visitation for a parent. Even in cases of abuse, the only reported cases have upheld supervised visitation. Supervised visitation is when the parent is only allowed to visit with the child in the company of another person. This person is usually a friend or relative that the two parents agree will be allowed to act as a chaperon. Supervised visitation often calls for a restriction of visitation to a particular location and time.
Who can be awarded visitation? Obviously a
biological parent can be awarded visitation. Additionally, grandparents (even
when the parents weren't married or are not currently divorced) and step-parents
may be awarded visitation rights. While there are no reported cases of brothers
or sisters being given visitation, a strong argument could be made that it would
be in the best interest of the child.
When can visitation be denied? The court has the power to deny visitation. Normally the court will only stop visitation for a certain time or until a certain task is performed. For example, the court has previously stayed visitation until the parent met their financial obligation. If your spouse should deny you court ordered visitation, you first file for a modification of visitation for a more definite schedule, before filing a Contempt Action. (DR.3). Many parents feel they have the right to stop paying child support, but they are wrong. Withholding of child support will only get you in trouble and possibly arrested.
Long distance solutions: Technology offers some innovative and creative ways for parents separated from their children to connect. "Virtual" visitation is coming to be recognized by the courts as a potentially important way to supplement in-person visits.
What if you fear for your child's safety or
just do not want to see the other parent?