Some divorces have unique circumstances, necessitating specific arrangements to benefit the divorcing couple’s child. These concerns could arise from facts and information presented during the divorce proceedings. Based on the situation, the judge could order supervised visitations.
This type of visitation happens when the court requires a neutral third party to be present during the visits. Supervised visitations could be necessary for cases involving mental health issues, domestic violence, abuse and abduction allegations, potentially endangering the child. However, this setup could also be beneficial when a parent wishes to bond with their child who has been apart for a long time.
Supervised visits work by having a third person or provider watching over and listening in throughout the visit. A provider has obligations related to the child’s safety, including the following:
- Being present from start to finish of the visit
- Listen to the interactions between the parent and child
- Observe if the child exhibits any unusual behavior
- File a report for any suspicions of child abuse
- Intervene or end the session if any issues arise
This type of visitation could be unpredictable. Sometimes, the court could require the provider to have specific certifications, professional experience and training. Based on the visit, they could also make mandatory reports if they suspect child abuse. Other times, family members or friends could serve as the provider if the visiting parent poses no danger to the child.
Fostering parent-child relationships
Visitation could help a child form a strong relationship with their noncustodial parent. However, some factors could risk safety based on the situation, case details or history between the child and parent. These are vital considerations for the court before finalizing child custody decisions. Fortunately, the law provides unique arrangements, such as supervised visitation, to foster parent-child bonds while keeping the child safe from harm.