Ensuring the Child’s Best Interest Through Supervised Visitation in New Jersey

Supervised Parenting Time, Also Known as Supervised Visitation, Allows Parents to Spend Time with Their Children While Ensuring the Child’s Safety

Leading Reasons to Request Supervised Visitation in Ocean County, NJSupervised parenting time or visitation exists to protect children from being alone with one parent who may not be able to properly care for them, not prioritize their best interests, or have a history of abuse. For parents who are concerned about the safety of their child while in the care of the child’s other parent, petitioning for supervised visitation can provide needed safeguards and peace of mind while their child is away from them. However, for those parents who are accused of wrongdoing or some inability to properly care for their child alone, supervised parenting time may feel like an unwarranted punishment or violation of their rights.

In New Jersey, the best interests of a child are paramount to all other concerns in child custody cases and certainly take precedence over the feelings or egos of parents. At the same time, petitioning for supervised parenting time is also not a way for one parent to exercise control over the child and/or the other parent simply because they disagree with the way they parent, so long as the child’s safety and wellbeing are protected.

Whether you are concerned for the welfare of your child while they are with their other parent or you are experiencing or facing supervised visitation for your own parenting time, a seasoned child custody lawyer at The Bronzino Law Firm can help you to effectively navigate the New Jersey legal system to protect the interests of your child, as well as your parental rights and relationship with your child.

Issues That Lead to Supervised Parenting Time in New Jersey

If the court determines that the child’s safety and welfare might be jeopardized by one parent due to a history of psychiatric problems, drug addiction, alcoholism, child abuse, physical disabilities, or any other situation, it may require that the parent’s visits with the child be supervised. Depending on the circumstances, parenting time may be supervised by a friend or family member or by a neutral professional. Some reasons behind a need for supervised parenting time like a physical disability rendering the parent unable to lift, change, or feed a child, where the court does not have a particular concern about the parent’s intentions or judgment, visits supervised by a friend or family in the parent’s home or place of choice may be appropriate.

However, if there is concern about the parent’s ability or willingness to safeguard the best interests of the child, evidenced by a history of abuse or current drug addiction, then the court may find that a neutral professional is the best choice for supervising parenting time at a neutral facility controlled by the professional. To support families in this way, New Jersey has several organizations and facilities where social workers provide a safe and neutral environment for children to interact with their parents under the Supervised Visitation Program. This program creates an environment where a child and their parent can establish a relationship or rebuild their bond in a safe place with the help of trained professionals and without the presence or interference of the other parent.

Requesting or Opposing Supervised Visitation

In New Jersey, if one parent is concerned about the safety and welfare of their child while they are with their other parent, they may petition the court to order supervised parenting time by presenting compelling evidence as to why supervision is necessary to protect the best interests of the child. In response, the other parent will have an opportunity to refute the claims made against them and present evidence to the court in support of their ability to provide for the best interests of the child and ensure their safety and wellbeing without supervision during their parenting time.

Important Evidence to Request Supervised Parenting Time in Monmouth County NJEvidence Required for the Court to Grant Supervised Parenting Time

In determining whether supervised visitation is necessary, the court will examine evidence presented by both sides. While supervised parenting time may be necessary, it also has downsides including potential interference from the custodial parent, a diminished parent-child bond, and a more limited range of experiences together. Unsubstantiated accusations from one side will likely not be enough to result in an order for supervised parenting time; however, when there is compelling evidence, the court will require parenting time to be supervised. An order for supervised parenting time may later be removed when more evidence is available that either proves the parent was never a threat to the child’s safety or welfare or that they are no longer a threat.

A good example of this is a parent who struggled with drug addiction but is in recovery and can demonstrate that they have not relapsed and are on a good path now. In that case, the court may remove the supervision requirement if they find that the child’s safety and welfare will not be jeopardized.

Our Seasoned Family Lawyers Can Help You Handle a Supervised Visitation Case in Ocean County, NJ

New Jersey courts strive to evaluate the need for supervised parenting time in a balanced and measured way that prioritizes the best interests of the child. However, in the view of many custodial and non-custodial parents, the courts do not always get it right. That is why it is imperative to seek the counsel and representation of a skilled family lawyer who can present compelling evidence in your custody case to support your parental rights and the best interests of your child.

If you are concerned about your child’s safety and welfare while they are with their other parent or if your child’s custodial parent is petitioning for your parenting time to be supervised, it is time to employ the help of an experienced New Jersey child custody lawyer at The Bronzino Law Firm. To set up a consultation and review your case; please contact us today. We can assist with all of your custody concerns in Mantoloking, Toms River, Point Pleasant, Eatontown, Middletown, Barnegat, Freehold, Ocean Township, Beachwood, Lakewood, Jackson, Brick, and other communities in Monmouth and Ocean County. Contact (732) 812-3102 to set up a free and confidential consultation with an experienced family law attorney today.