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Baltimore County Family Law Attorney Blog

Baltimore & Towson Lawyer Discusses Supervised Visitation in Maryland

Written by Amar Weisman » February 25, 2015 »

A number of difficult issues can arise when couples decide to separate or divorce. One such issue relates to child custody and visitation. Such issues are often very sensitive and tensions can run quite high among the parties, especially when someone attempts to limit or take away time spent with minor children.

That said, it is important for those facing tough decisions related to visitation and custody to work with a capable Baltimore and Towson family law attorney who knows the intricacies of the law and will handle the case in an appropriate and professional manner.

Generally, courts in Maryland and elsewhere throughout the country find that children benefit from having access to both parents. Visitation is a parent’s legal right; nevertheless, judges must consider the welfare of the children when determining whether or not visitation is appropriate.

While it is true it is rare for a parent to be completely denied any type of visitation, there are occasions where the court will need to establish specific limitations and restrictions with respect to custody and visitation to help ensure the children’s safety and overall wellbeing.

Issues That May Lead to Visitation and Custody Restrictions

Judges typically base custody and visitation decisions on what is in the best interest of the child or children involved. There are a number of factors to be taken into consideration when making such decisions. There are, however, certain issues that may cause a judge to restrict a parent’s custody and/or visitation rights. Such issues include, but are not limited to:

  • Substance and/or alcohol abuse
  • Anger management
  • Spousal and/or child abuse
  • Harmful exposure to the other parent’s significant other
  • Interference with visitation

Depending on the nature and seriousness of these issues, the court may choose to order supervised visitation.

Supervised Visitation

The term “visitation” refers to the amount of parenting time a parent gets with his or her minor children. Visitation may consist of two or three hours on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays or it might allow for overnight stays at a parent’s home. If a court finds that a child’s wellbeing and/or health may be in jeopardy, the judge is highly likely to consider supervised visitation as opposed to eliminating visitation altogether.

Various jurisdictions throughout Maryland have existing supervised visitation programs that utlilize step-down and phase-out plans that will be used as appropriate. However, if no program is available, judges may order a neutral third-party supervisor to handle visitation.

When choosing third-party supervisors who are Randallstown friends or family members of the parties involved, the court will look closely at whether or not the individual is neutral, whether he or she has the ability to protect the child or children involved, whether he or she will be available to supervise visitation as needed, as well as a host of other factors.

Mom vs. Dad

Many people believe that mothers are given special preference when it comes to custody and visitation issues. However, Maryland law contains no legal preference for the mother or father. Still, practically any family law attorney will tell you that there may be judges who tend to favor one parent over another.

If you or someone you love has questions or concerns about possible custody and visitation restrictions in your case, contact the Law Offices of Amar Weisman, LLC as soon as possible.

Call For a Free Consultation With a Top Towson Family Law Firm. 

Call The Law Offices of Amar S. Weisman at (410) 321-4994 to schedule a Free ConsultationThe Purpose of the consultation is to determine whether you want to retain this law firm as your Baltimore & Towson Family Lawyer. If you do wish to proceed, then you must pay a retainer. See Our Policy on Fees and Costs. The family firm is located next to The Circuit Court for Baltimore County, at 1018 Dulaney Valley Road, Towson, MD 21204.