Non-Custodial Parent Visitation
Definition - What does Non-Custodial Parent Visitation mean?
A non-custodial parent does not have the legal right to determine where a child will live, but they do have the right to spend time with their child and know where their child resides, which are rights determined by the non-custodial parent visitation schedule.
Non-custodial parent visitation is generally drafted at the time of divorce or separation. Many states prefer the parents to draft a reasonable visitation schedule, which the court will approve if they determine that it is in the best interests of the children.
Justipedia explains Non-Custodial Parent Visitation
Parents who are unable to negotiate their own visitation schedule may decide to have a mediator facilitate the process in hopes of reaching a mutually satisfying agreement. If the parents cannot come to an agreement for non-custodial parent visitation, however, the courts will intervene and develop a plan.
Assuming that there are no issues of abuse, neglect or abandonment, courts generally assume that children should have a relationship with both their mother and their father. Custodial parents who fail to abide by the agreed upon or court-ordered non-custodial parent visitation schedule can be held in contempt of court.
Although many custodial parents attempt to deny the non-custodial parent visitation, there are a few legal reasons that justify this action. For example, refusal for visitation by the non-custodial parent cannot be made regardless of whether the child is sick, the custodial parent does not like her ex-husband’s new girlfriend, or the child is at another scheduled activity. Failure to pay child support also does not give the custodial parent the legal right to eliminate non-custodial visitation privileges.
Non-custodial parent visitation may be terminated, however, if the custodial parent believes that the child is a victim of abuse or the non-custodial parent is using drugs or drinking during the visitation. Changes to the non-custodial parent visitation schedule can only be made, however, after the custodial parent makes the request and the visitation schedule is updated by the court.