California’s Supervised Child Visitation System FAQ

Tierney Law Group

What is Supervised Visitation?

In the process of family law and its disposition in divorce, separation or similar legal proceedings, sometimes visitation by the non-custodial parent has to be applied. This is often applied in cases where an argument has been raised about the status of a parent and their time with their child needs to be monitored by the court. Essentially, the court selects a third party to be present in a neutral location during the time allocated for the non-custodial parent to be with their child. Most times, the third party is a child protective services worker or contractor.

In child visitation California cases the overriding court’s position is the best interest of the child, not whether a situation is equitable to a parent per se. So, in many cases a child will be placed with the parent best suited to provide custodial care based on the evidence, and where needed for protection a supervised visitation will be applied to the other parent. The time, duration and frequency are all determined by the court. Convincing the court to one’s case view is where a resource like the Tierney Law Group becomes critical.

When Does the Court Direct Supervised Visitation in a Case?

In most cases, the court tries to keep both parents involved with the affected child or children. However, when the court finds that conditions, behavior of a parent, or locations are unsafe for the child, the court can instead order supervised visits. Many times, the order is temporary until the visiting parent can prove to the court he or she has solved their problems, gotten life back on track and can provide a safe environment for the child. The most common causes tend to be issues of domestic violence or child neglect or abuse, drug abuse, or where a parent was absent for an extended period due to problems. The court will apply supervised visitation to provide the visiting parent with a chance to make connections again and build a parent relationship in a safe setting for the child. The condition is also applied when there is enough evidence for the court to be worried about parental abduction.

How Should Both Parents Act?

Ideally, the parents involved should set up and mutually agree to a parenting plan that the supervised visitation party is part of. This helps resolve a lot of friction during visits as well as avoids surprises that create arguments. If the parents can’t agree, the court will decide the details anyway. Any Pleasanton supervised visitation attorney will note parental behavior is an issue for both parents; the court will be watching both, gauging behavior and responses, and making future decisions about the welfare of the child based on its observations. Again, supervised visits are not permanent in most cases, so visitation and even custodial rights can change as things move along over time from what supervised visitation attorney Pleasanton CA experts have seen.

Watching Your Ps and Qs

The parent that really works against the process or becomes disruptive is most likely to be the one that ends up seeing the negative perspective of the court in the case, oftentimes seeing even more constraints applied instead of a loosening up of the visitation conditions. This is particularly important for non-custodial parents who are already on the lesser side of the picture. Failing to use visit permissions, causing issues, lashing out at the monitor and similar all end up convincing the court that the child may be better off not being with such a parent at all. Parents who need help making their case should definitely be working with a Pleasanton visitation attorney like the Tierney Law Group. Unlike general divorce counsel, a Pleasanton visitation lawyer focuses specifically on what the court is looking for in terms of the child’s best interests. This nuance is often what confuses visiting parents, but a supervised visitation attorney in Pleasanton CA can help with valuable guidance.

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