Visitation Lawyers in Toronto Explaining Your Rights
The time you spend with your children is precious, and it never feels like enough. The courts know how important it is for children to have frequent contact with both parents, and that’s why they often set up visitation schedules to ensure that both parents have court-ordered time with the children. However, sometimes, visitation rights cases can get complicated, and it can be difficult to know what your legal rights and obligations are. Find out more about visitation and what to do if you’re being kept from your children.
Visitation can be a confusing family law issue, and it’s important to understand exactly what it means and how it applies to your case. Talk with one of our lawyers to get more information on visitation rights in Toronto and how you may be able to get more time with your children.
What Is Visitation
In the family courts, visitation refers to someone–usually a parent–having a court-ordered schedule to see the children at certain times. However, it’s also possible for other parties, such as grandparents, to be granted visitation. Visitation schedules are usually given to the noncustodial parent so that they know when they are going to get to spend time with the children, and the children can have the security of a routine. Visitation can be unsupervised or supervised and can take place in the visiting parent’s home or at a different location, depending on what the court orders.
Do All Parents Automatically Have Visitation Rights?
In general, parents are assumed to have full parental rights–including visitation rights–to their children until and unless the courts say otherwise. This means that one parent cannot deny the other parent visitation with the children if there is no court order yet established outlining the visitation rights and schedule. Once an order is put in place, the custodial parent is not legally able to keep the children away from the other parent–usually referred to as the access parent–during their scheduled times.
If you have been granted visitation rights and the other parent is refusing to let you see the children, it is important to talk with a family law lawyer as soon as possible and let the courts know that the other parent isn’t abiding by the court order. You will also want to continue to attempt to exercise all of your visitations to show the courts that you have done everything possible to maintain a relationship with the children and that the other parent is refusing access.
What Does Supervised Visitation Mean?
Supervised visitation means that the parent exercising the visitation is not legally allowed to spend time with the children alone. The courts may order that visitation simply be supervised by another party and leave the details up to the parent. For example, a parent could have their visitation supervised by a friend of the family or a grandparent.
However, it’s also possible for the courts to order supervised visitation that has to take place with more formal supervision in an ordered location. This type of supervised visitation is usually reserved for parents who have demonstrated a history of putting their children in dangerous situations, such as abuse or substance use.
Can a lawyer Help Me Get More Visitation?
If you are trying to get more visitation with your children, a family law lawyer can definitely help. They can walk you through the difference between custody and visitation and ensure that you’re moving toward your goals. For example, if the other parent was granted sole custody and you were only given minor visitation rights, working toward an increase in visitation could set the stage for eventually asking the courts for a joint custody arrangement. An lawyer can also advise you on how to handle visitation to make sure that you’re abiding by any and all court orders.
If you’re not sure what your visitation rights are or you want to see your children more often, talking with an experienced family law lawyer is the first step. At Anthony Family Law, we have worked on all kinds of visitation cases and can help you understand your options and how to take steps toward extended visitation. Get started by calling our Toronto office at 647-933-2397.