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What types of visitation options do parents have in California?

In California, when parents divorce, child custody decisions will be one of the most important issues they have to address. While sometimes joint physical custody is an option if it is feasible for both parents to spend an equal amount of time with the child in their care, oftentimes one parent will have primary physical custody and the other parent will have visitation periods with the child. The following is an overview of the types of visitation parents may consider.

Scheduled visitation

Sometimes parents will set up a specific schedule outlining which days each of them will have the child in their care. This can include visitation during the school year, weekends, summers and holidays. Having a schedule can prevent conflict and confusion on the part of both the parents and the child.

Reasonable visitation

Other times, parents will not want to establish a strict visitation schedule and prefer to leave things more open ended. Reasonable visitation is feasible if parents have a cooperative and communicative relationship with one another despite their divorce. It also allows for more flexibility than scheduled visitation. However, it does leave the door open to issues if parents disagree on when they should have the child in their care.

Supervised visitation

Sometimes it is in the child’s best interest for having supervised visitation with the noncustodial parent. These visitation periods can be supervised by another adult or a professional agency. Supervised visitation may be necessary for safety reasons or if the child and the parent have been apart for a long time, and need to slowly become more familiar with one another.

No visitation

Sometimes it is in a child’s best interest to not have any visitation with a parent, especially if the parent could cause the child physical or emotional harm even with supervision.

Learn more about child custody and visitation

Ultimately, this post does not contain legal advice. Those in San Francisco who want to learn more about child custody and visitation in California are encouraged to explore our firm’s website for further information.