Parenting Time – Visitation
Ohio law replaced the term visitation with parenting time (the terms are both used and mean the same) and this issue often comes up where there is no dispute as to who should be the legal custodian.
This may be because one party stayed at home or truly was the primary caretaker of the child(ren) for many years and it would not be in the best interests of the child(ren) to change that. However, there may be a dispute as to how much the other parent should visit. Each court has their own standard order of parenting time that was created to provide a type of fall-back schedule that parties could agree too. While most of them possess similarities in basic principles, each is still different from the other. If the parties live geographically close to each other, the basic assumption is that they will alternate weekends, alternate holidays and the non-residential parent will have the child(ren) for a block of time during the summer. In addition, there may be some provisions for mid-week visitation. That mid-week visitation may be for a few hours or could be for overnight until school commences the next day. Each court, judge, and magistrate will look at these differently. The best way to not worry about how the judge will decide is for the parties to reach an agreement themselves.
Sometimes fights about visitation are actually fights about other issues.
A party may be upset because their spouse left or they are going to be in a worse situation than when they were married can create arguments over visitation. The goal should be that visitation is open and flows between the parents based on the best interests. No schedule that a court puts together will take into account all of the needs that the parties will have. No schedule that a court puts into place can take into account any emergencies or unexpected situations that may arise.
The parenting time schedule can be determined by the age of the child(ren). Sometimes depending upon the age of the child, shorter more frequent visits may be appropriate. As the child(ren)gets older, it may be better for those visits to become less in frequency, but longer in duration. Hopefully, you and the other parent can talk about what kind of parents you both want to be and make the basis of all decisions on what will benefit the child(ren) the most. Although things are different because the parents have separated , many needs of the child(ren) stay the same regardless if the parents remain together or not. It is of utmost importance for parents to learn to communicate since they are no longer together in a way they could not do when they were together. There are numerous ways that we can help people achieve this goal. In circumstances where the other parent is unreasonable, we can help in seeking to limit their parenting time or enforce your rights to your parenting time. We will aggressively protect your rights and work with you to get the best result possible under the circumstance.
Questions regarding visitation, changing visitation or requests to change documentation?
Our attorneys can help you through the process, contact us today for more info.