Experienced San Bernardino Child Visitation Rights Attorney – Affordable & Best New & Modifications Of Orders Law Firm Getting You Results All Over SB County Courts
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It is considered to be best for a child’s well being that he continues to see both of his parents after the separation. That is why, according to California family laws the parent who does not get the custody must also be granted “reasonable visitation rights”.
This term is to be defined by trial courts, which also establish the schedule for the visits. Although there are some statutory limitations the main principle on which the term is defined is the child’s best interest. If the custody order does not mention this right it is to be taken as being implicit unless there is a clear mention of withholding the visitation right on a relevant basis.
The health, safety and welfare of the child are to be taken into consideration when releasing visitation orders. Other aspects such as the child’s age, his level of maturity and particular needs as well as his own preference, are also often taken into account.
On the other hand, child support payment, the absence or relocation from the family house, lifestyle, sexual orientation and religious beliefs are not valid points on the basis of which visitation rights can be restricted. These can be brought into the discussion only if they can be proven to cause actual harm to the child.
In the case of a younger child the parent is obliged to make him available for the visits of the other, the noncustodial parent. If failing to do so he can be punishable by contempt. However, if the custody order concerns a teenager who refuses to comply with the schedule set by the court the custodial parent cannot be held responsible while the other parent has nothing more to do but resign himself to the situation.
More Information on Decision Making and Non-parent Visitation
In San Bernardino, CA the parent who is in the legal custody of the child has the final say in matters regarding the child’s education and upbringing. Only when the parents have joint custody the right to decision making shifts between the two parents according to the visitation periods.
California law allows for “reasonable visitation rights” to be granted to other persons such as the child’s grandparents if this is in his best interest. The court has discretion on granting such rights. If the custodial parent does not wish the visitation right to be given to someone else he must prove that this would be detrimental for the child.
Legal Procedure and Modification of Visitation Rights
The parties involved, usually the two parents, can sign a written agreement, which is always the encouraged procedure. However, if there are disagreements between the two, the visitation order can then be issued at any time before the child is eighteen of age.
In most cases the order is made when filing the documents for a temporary restraining order or within weeks from doing so on an application for an order to show cause and finally, at the trial.
Modifications to a visitation rights order can be made whenever the requesting parent can prove that there have been modifications to the initial circumstances in which the first order was issued. These modifications may include the change of residence, evidence of child abuse, changes in the child’s school schedule and the request of an older child to reduce or increase visitation hours.
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