Reasonable visitation

Negotiating a visitation schedule can be difficult for Utah parents who are going through a divorce. While fixed visitation schedules are always an option, this often prevents non-custodial parents from being able to be fully involved in their child's life.

If a judge has determined that the non-custodial parent is eligible for reasonable visitation, it is incumbent upon the two parents to negotiate a schedule that works for both parties. There are a number of advantages to this type of visitation. In general, reasonable visitation is granted to parties who are able to work together or communicate, and in these cases the judge believes that the two parties are most likely able to work out a flexible plan that may change based on the parents' circumstances. Additionally, both parents are much more likely to be able to play a greater part in the child's life by attending extracurricular activities or school functions together.

However, this type of visitation only works smoothly if both parents can cooperate. The custodial parent usually has more of an influence over when the non-custodial parent can visit with their child and the overall duration of the visit. If the custodial parent attempts to use the reasonable visitation order as a way to gain an advantage or control over the non-custodial parent, a judge may change the type of visitation the non-custodial parent has later on.

If a parent is involved in a custody arrangement dispute, a family law attorney may assist with negotiating a visitation schedule that benefits both the client and the child in question. The attorney may be equipped to work out terms that allow the non-custodial parent to be involved in the child's academic and extracurricular endeavors in addition to being involved in their everyday lives through virtual visitation.

Source: FindLaw, "Parental Visitation Rights FAQ", accessed on Jan. 27, 2015

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