Understanding Supervised Visitation

Understanding supervised visitation

Lack of trust is one of the driving factors in divorce, and this is not likely to increase after the divorce is final. It’s normal for parents to be worried about what is going on with their children when the other parent has them for visitation, but in most cases, this is something that gets easier with time. However, in some extreme situations, the courts may decide that there is a need for supervised visitation to ensure the children’s safety when they are with the parent.

Anytime supervised visitation is ordered by the courts, there will be a reason for the supervision stated in the order. It is also possible for the supervised visitation to be temporary until the parent can show that he or she is capable of caring for the child.

The state of New Jersey considers unsupervised visitation the default for custody orders, and that means that negligence or abuse must be proven in order for the parenting time to be changed to supervised visits. If you have concerns about your ex’s ability to provide adequate care for the children or there is a history of abuse that indicates the children are not safe with the parent, it’s important to let your attorney know as soon as possible.

Sometimes, these issues are not present during the marriage or even at the time of the divorce but occur later on, even years, after the original custody order is put in effect. In these situations, it’s important to contact a family law attorney who can quickly file any motions needed to keep the children safe while the courts work out the possibility and terms of supervised visitation.

Source: New Jersey Department of Children and Families, “Determination of whether visit is to be supervised,” accessed June 22, 2015


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