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How to Go About Resuming Unrestricted Timesharing with Your Child Following a Florida Court Order of Supervised Visitation

Most parents just want the best for their children. Part of that includes ensuring that they can have a healthy and meaningful relationship with the child. If you are denied visitation or have all of your visits supervised, that may impair the growth of your relationship with your child. To make sure that you get an appropriate order of visitation that will help to enhance your parent-child relationship, be sure you have representation from an experienced South Florida family law attorney.

One of the key aspects of getting quality visitation time can be obtaining unsupervised visits. One recent case from Miami focused upon that question of transitioning from supervised to unsupervised visits. The parents, D. and S., were married for 14 years before the wife filed for divorce. As part of her divorce petition, the wife sought an injunction for protection against domestic violence. That injunction prevented D. from having contact with S. or the couple’s two children.

The court appointed a psychologist to examine the parents and the children. The psychologist recommended that the father receive supervised visitation with a goal of ending that supervision “in a short time frame.” The guardian ad litem for the children recommended that unsupervised “visits should considered as the next step.” However, when the court entered its parenting plan for the couple, it stated that the father’s supervised timesharing was to continue and made no reference to any future potential for unsupervised visits.

The father appealed that order and he won. He won because Florida law has some very specific rules regarding the imposition of supervised visits or denial of visitation. Any time a court denies timesharing or imposes restrictions on that timesharing, the law requires the judge to set out the steps that that parent must take in order to regain unlimited visits. In D.’s case, neither the court order, nor the guardian ad litem’s recommendations nor the psychologist’s report spelled out the exact things that that the father needed to do in order to have his timesharing with the children be unsupervised.

That type of order is not allowed. Florida court rulings are clear that a timesharing order must allow a parent “to walk out of the courtroom knowing that if [he] satisfactorily accomplishes relatively specific tasks, [he] will be able to reestablish unsupervised timesharing.

Resuming unsupervised contact with your children as quickly as possible is very important to most parents. Supervisors can range from family members, like an aunt, uncle or grandparent, to professional providers who offer supervision at neutral facilities. In any of these scenarios, the presence of that third party has the potential to alter the dynamic of the interaction between you and your child, impeding the strengthening of your bond in the process. For these and other reasons, it is often a high-priority goal to reestablish unsupervised contact as quickly as possible. To do that, make sure you have a knowledgeable advocate in your corner. Skilled Miami family law attorney Sara Saba has been providing reliable advice and strong advocacy for her clients for more than 13 years. Our team is dedicated solely to meeting your family law needs. Contact us online or by calling (305) 450-8009 to schedule your consultation. Hablamos Español.

More blog posts:

Contempt of Court, Due Process of Law, and Child Custody/Timesharing Cases in South Florida, Miami Divorce Lawyer Blog, June 4, 2018

What the Law Does (and Does Not) Allow Courts to Do in Florida Child Custody and Timesharing Disputes, Miami Divorce Lawyer Blog, May 17, 2018