Rational Ways to Decide Child Visitation

Charles Ullman located in Raleigh NC

A bill that would give parents a new way to decide child visitation issues during a divorce is under consideration in Utah, according to the Deseret News.

Parents in Utah already have the right to choose visitation schedules that work best for them, the article says. That usually is agreed upon in mediation or is decided by a judge if the parents can’t come to an agreement.

The legislation, however, would increase the ability of the noncustodial parent to be a prominent figure in a child’s life.

Under the proposed “parent-child” visitation arrangement, children would have 145 overnights and a set holiday schedule to spend with their noncustodial parent. Its goal is to give children a chance to build a sense of home rather than feeling tossed around with a more traditional schedule such as alternating weekends or holidays.

Giving children the opportunity to build a strong relationship with each parent should be a primary goal during any divorce. Barring extenuating circumstances that would make a generous visitation schedule impossible or dangerous – as in cases where domestic violence or substance abuse poses a threat to a child’s wellbeing – it is prudent for couples to remember that fostering stability is the best way to ensure that children make it through a divorce with as few emotional scars as possible.

In North Carolina, divorcing parents can also use mediation to determine the best arrangement so that they can both remain a part of their children’s lives. In mediation, a professionally trained and impartial third party facilitates discussions with parents in order to come to a co-parenting agreement that (hopefully) serves everyone’s best interests.

One of the nice features about mediation is that it is less formal and more relaxed than a traditional courtroom setting. A calm atmosphere helps couples make decisions in a rational way rather than letting their nerves and resentments boil over and destroy chances for collaboration.


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