What Is Supervised Visitation And Why Would The Judge Order It?

Are you wondering whether you should request supervised visitation for your ex-spouse? Perhaps your ex has requested that you be supervised while visiting with your children. This article will provide a brief introduction to supervised visitation in California.

Supervised visitation is appropriate in cases where the court determines that a child may be at emotional or physical risk when visiting with a parent. Under Family Code section 3020, the health, safety, and welfare of the child is the court’s primary concern when making orders regarding custody and visitation.

Reasons For Ordering Supervised Visitation

There are a variety of reasons for which supervised (or monitored) visitation might be ordered.

  • If there have been past incidents of physical or emotional abuse by a parent, the court may order supervised visitation while the parent participates in anger management or other training.
  • Sometimes a parent is recovering from an addiction or mental health issue and his/her behavior is not completely predictable.
  • If the child and parent have spent little or no time together, the court may want to ensure the child’s safety and emotional security while the relationship develops.
  • If there is a risk of the parent abducting the child, supervised visitation can be an appropriate means to prevent abduction while still allowing the child and parent to see each other.

Types of Supervised Visitations

In each case, the monitor—whether a paid professional or approved personal friend/family member—ensures that the child is in an emotionally and physically safe environment during the visitation. The monitor may be:

  • A family friend or relative.
  • A professional monitor.
  • A licensed therapist who supervises while modeling appropriate parenting skills to the parent.

Supervised visitation can be handled in a variety of ways:

  • Parent and child may meet in the presence of a third party monitor.
  • Parent and child may meet in a group setting with other parent/child visitations at a visitation center.
  • Visitation may be done remotely via telephone or video (e.g., Skype).

When ordered by the court, it is important that the order include when/if the supervision should cease. For example, the judge may require that the parent participate in specific parenting training or show evidence of a drug-free existence for a specific length of time.

Family Law Attorneys In Long Beach, CA

If you have questions regarding a current court order or are considering requesting or opposing supervised visitation, the family law attorneys at Shoreline Legal Group can help. We are a modern law firm offering a flat fee structure rather than the traditional hourly rate. Give us a call to see if we can assist you. Serving Long Beach, Cerritos, Santa Ana, and Orange, CA as well as surround areas.

Julie Resner
About the Author: Julie Resner