Not call California parents are able to parent together. Whether it is through divorce, separation or a split, it is not uncommon for children to grow up with their parents no longer together. For the most part, parents can work out an agreeable child custody arrangement; however, when the health and safety of the child is a great concern when they are with the other parent, this could result in a challenging situation.
It is never an easy decision to make when requesting supervised visitation; however, if a parent believes it is in the best interest of the child, it is imperative to understand this matter and what rights and options you might have.
Basics of supervised visitation
In simple terms, supervised visitation is when a provider, a neutral third-party, watches and listens during the time a parent spends with a child. This situation could be ordered for various situations.
Supervised visitation could occur when there are safety issues for the child due to allegations of domestic violence, child abuse or child abduction. It could also be ordered when a parent that has never had a relationship with their child and seeks to spend time with them. Finally, a judge may order supervised visitation due to safety concerns stemming from drug or alcohol abuse or mental health issues.
Who can serve as a provider?
The purpose of a provider is to ensure that the child is kept safe. As such, they must be always present during the visit, pay close attention to the behavior of the child, listen to everything said, report any suspicion of child abuse and is comfortable interrupting or ending the visit if they have any concern.
A provider could be a professional or a nonprofessional. With regards to a professional provider, this is an individual with special training, has passed a background check, are mandated reporters and charge a fee for this service. Often, professional providers are used for short visits, typically lasting for 1 to 2 hours.
In contrast, a nonprofessional provider is typically a friend or family member. This individual does not have special training; however, if it is deemed dangerous for the child to be left alone with the other parent, a nonprofessional provider may not be the best option.
If you are in a situation where you believe requesting supervised visits of your child with the other parent, it is important that you gain more information about your situation. This not only better protects your legal rights but also protects the best interests of the child.