Custody & Visitation
General Custody & Visitation Articles
In a child custody case, or a contested child support case, the judge may choose to appoint a lawyer for the child. The judge may also choose to interview the child personally. A child who is at least 16 years old may also choose to ask for a custody change directly.
Custody and visitation are the legal terms for court decisions about how the child will spend his/her time between parents (or others).
Guardianship is a sub-set of custody. Often, a third party just needs to obtain guardianship for health and/or educational purposes. This is less intrusive than custody.
Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS) is a form of immigration relief available to undocumented children living in the U.S. who have been abandoned, abused, or neglected by at least one parent and meet several other eligibility requirements.
A standby guardian is a person appointed by a parent (or parents) of a child to take care of the child in the event that the parent is mentally or physically incapable of doing so, or subject to an adverse immigration action.
When deciding grandparent visitation rights, the court must balance what is best for the child, with a parent’s constitutional right to direct the way their child is raised.
Visitation is the part of the court order that defines when, how and where the non-custodial parent may have contact with the child.