When a judge grants child visitation to a non-custodial parent, the details of the arrangement are recorded in a document called a visitation agreement. Both parents are legally bound to comply with this document or face legal consequences. If parents have trouble enforcing visitation agreements, an attorney can provide help.
Violation of this agreement by the non-custodial parent may be classified as an act in contempt of court. This allows the court to suspend the visitation rights of the non-custodial parent. The right to visit with the child is based on the best interests of that child and when these interests are called into question due to behavior of the non-custodial parent, courts have a right to step in and take action.
If a custodial parent believes that visitation with the non-custodial parent poses a threat or is detrimental to the child, a child visitation lawyer should be retained. Issues may include failing to return the child according to the agreement, allowing the child to engage in risky or dangerous activities, or threatening or abusing the child. The attorney will present the case to the court, which can order indefinite suspension of visitation.
A custodial parent may also violate a visitation agreement. For example, withholding visitation because the non-custodial parent has become delinquent with child support payments is not permitted. If a custodial parent makes a habit of interfering with visitation rights, the non-custodial parent should retain a lawyer specializing in this issue. When the attorney presents this situation to a court, the judge may decide to grant custody to the former non-custodial parent.
In essence, if either parent discourages a positive relationship between him or herself and the child or the other parent and the child, a court will not look favorably upon this individual. Courts are charged with acting in the best interests of the child at all times. This means that they may alter visitation or custody arrangements based on the actions of the parents. Even entering into a non-marital personal relationship can place a parent in a negative light regarding child custody.
Whenever a custodial or non-custodial parent believes that a provision of the child visitation agreement has been violated, a child visitation lawyer should be consulted. This type of attorney has experience with these situations and can determine whether a case exists. If a decision is made to proceed in court, the lawyer will represent the petitioning parent, fighting for a positive outcome.