The term “visitation,” or “parenting time,” refers to how the parents will split time with the children. A parent who has a child less than half the time has visitation with the children. The parent who gets visitation is referred to as the noncustodial parent. The court considers what is in the best interests of the child when ordering visitation during a Shelby County divorce.
The court considers the parents’ circumstances and other factors, such as the children’s education and medical needs. Typically, it helps for the parents to come up with visitation plans to avoid conflicts. The parents and court may develop a visitation schedule with dates and times to allow parties to organize holidays and vacations. Failure to follow the visitation schedule can result in a contempt of court charge. This act can carry a penalty of jail time and a fine.
A court may issue a reasonable visitation order. This allows parents to work out a schedule for the child to spend a reasonable amount of time with both of them. A reasonable visitation order is helpful for parents who get along and can work out details.
When one parent is concerned about the child’s safety and well-being with the other parent, they may request that the court order supervised visitation with the other parent. The supervision may be accomplished by the first parent, another adult, or a professional agency like the YWCA. Supervised visitation can be helpful for a child and parent that have not seen each other for a while.
The first parent can request no visitation (or agree to it in a cheap uncontested divorce) if the second parent could physically or emotionally harm the children. The first parent’s argument will be strengthened if they can present evidence that the second parent has engaged in harmful behavior before. Such evidence could be records in a criminal case or a protective court order naming the child in a civil case.
When the second parent has a dependency case with regard to the child, they may make progress on steps to spend time with the child. This can be completion of a substance abuse treatment program or anger management class. A parent’s progress or lack of it in a dependency case can affect the amount and type of visitation the court will order.
Certain judicial circuits like the 23rd judicial circuit have developed a custody schedule that addresses visitation. The schedule encourages the non-custodial parent to pick up the child at the residence of the custodial parent or at school at the end of the school day. The custody schedule is extremely detailed and provides for visitation times on opposite years for certain holidays like Labor Day.
Parents are expected to keep one another informed of their respective personal business, contact information, and addresses. The custodial parent is expected to provide minor children with a sufficient amount of clean clothes, school books, uniforms, and other items during the noncustodial parent’s visitation. The noncustodial parent is expected to return all the items in a Hoover divorce.
Alabama retains jurisdiction over a child custody matter if the noncustodial parent lives outside the state. A court can provide for out-of-state visitation in a visitation order. A judge may require a custodial parent to travel all or half of the way to the noncustodial parent. Often a noncustodial parent living out of state will be allotted a significant amount of time during the summer to visit with the child. If there are multiple children, visitation orders can vary for each child.
During a period of overnight visitation, a parent is expected not to allow a person who is not related to them by blood or marriage, and with whom they are in a romantic and/or sexual relationship, to remain in the same place with the children. A parent who exercises visitation with a child is expected to ensure that the child completes their homework and school projects. When a parent’s schedule changes to the extent that visitation will be affected, they are expected to notify the other parent. A failure to notify other parties may be taken into account if there is a divorce proceeding in Talladega County on the modification of custody or visitation with a child.
Attorney Steven A. Harris regularly blogs in the areas of family law, bankruptcy, probate, and real estate closings on this website. Mr. Harris tries to provide informative information to the public in easily digestible formats. Hopefully you enjoyed this article and feel free to supply feedback. We appreciate our readers & love to hear from you!