Heidi E. Opinsky

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Child Visitation

Child Visitation Lawyer In Fairfield County

Child Visitation In Fairfield County

When parents of minor children go through a divorce, there must be a determination about who will get physical and legal custody of the children. If the parents are not able to arrive at an agreement, then the court will step in and make the determinations that are in the best interests of the children. Part of this decision will involve an establishment of a visitation schedule or parenting plan in order to preserve the relationship between each child and the noncustodial parent. At this point, you need an experienced child visitation lawyer on your side.

The Law Offices of Heidi E. Opinsky, LLC is a prominent divorce firm focusing on the needs of its clients, striving to exceed all expectations rather than simply meeting them. Heidi E. Opinsky and her team of legal professionals ascribe to these principles, taking actions based on the goals and needs of her clients. One of the times this becomes crucial is when there are children involved.

Establishing The Visitation Schedule

Child custody and visitation are subjects that often involve conflict and emotional turmoil during a divorce action. The parents are encouraged to come to an agreement on the parenting plan, including whether the parents will share legal custody, with which parent the child will primarily reside and the visitation schedule for the noncustodial parent. When the parties are unable to come to an agreement, the court will issue an order establishing custody, visitation and parenting time after considering testimony and evidence.

The court may also appoint a Guardian Ad Litem or Attorney for Minor Child and other expert professionals, such as a Parent Coordinator, to assist the court and the parties in reaching an amicable access and visitation schedule and parenting plan, or in more serious cases, supervised visitation or custody evaluations through the court or privately retained experts may be necessary in order to determine the appropriate manner of parental access in the best interests of the child.

Further, the court will determine which parent will provide the primary residence for the child while the other parent enjoys access and visitation and parenting time with the children away from the residential custodial parent. Shared physical custody resulting in more equal time spent between the homes of the parents is also possible when the parents reside in the same school district or close by to each other, so that the children may go more freely between each residence of the parents. It is important for parents to consider sharing parental time with the children on weekends, holidays, school vacations and summer access in blocks of quality time to increase the bond and role models the other parent may exercise with the children.

In many cases, joint physical or actual shared physical custody may be too disruptive for the child and the court will award primary physical custody to one parent. This is not a reflection of the fitness of the other parent, as in the case of a sole custody award by a court, and supervised, limited or no visitation if a court is protecting a child from a parent who may suffer from serious concerns of physical violence, sexual or verbal abuse and neglect, alcohol or drugs which negatively impact a child. In order to ensure close, continuing and nurturing contact between the noncustodial parent and the child, the court will establish as expansive and detailed a visitation schedule and parenting plan as may be appropriate on a case-by-case basis.

When there is ongoing conflict between the parents and serious issues affecting the health and well-being of a child that are interfering with the resolution of custody and visitation issues, the court and the child visitation lawyer representing you may decide to bring in experts such as psychiatrists, psychologists, therapists, social workers, parent coordinators, Guardian Ad Litems or Attorneys for the Minor Child to assist in assessing what custody and visitation schedules and parenting plans, or limited and supervised access between the child and the parent, is in the best interests of the child. A Guardian Ad Litem is usually an attorney who addresses the best interests of younger children in court, even if this is in contrast to the expressed wishes of that child. An attorney representing a minor child is counsel and a legal advocate who is appointed by the court or selected by the parties to represent older, yet still minor children, who are able to adequately express their interests and objectives to their legal representatives to reach the best possible resolution. Ms. Opinsky has worked for the best interests of children throughout Connecticut and New York as both a Guardian Ad Litem and Attorney for a Minor Child.

After working with the experts and legal professionals, the court will order a visitation schedule and parenting plan intended to nurture a relationship between the noncustodial parent and the child. Once this order is in place, both parents are obligated to comply with the order. If either parent wants to modify the visitation schedule, he or she must petition the court to effectuate that change based upon various changes in circumstances and factors, rather than taking matters into his or her own hands, thereby violating the court’s order.

When a noncustodial parent is denied the ability to spend time with a child by the custodial parent, or either parent is not following the court-ordered parenting plan and custodial arrangements, it is important for a parent to go back to court to obtain a court ruling on the interference and obstructionist behavior of a parent in order to ensure compliance. Depending on the nature of the violation, the court will take action to ensure compliance moving forward, which might include a finding of contempt or other penalties.

Experienced Divorce And Child Visitation Lawyer Serving Fairfield County And New York

The initial establishment of custody arrangements and visitation and the ongoing enforcement of an agreement or order are important parts of every divorce where there are children involved. A skilled divorce, custody and visitation attorney is going to be able to achieve the best outcome for her client. Contact Heidi E. Opinsky today at 203-653-3542 to schedule a confidential consultation.