What to Do About Visitation Refusal During COVID-19
The stay at home orders issued by most governors around the country during the COVID-19 pandemic have resulted in some challenges for divorced parents with timesharing or visitation arrangements for their children. Custodial parents may be hesitant to allow visitation to continue as normal due to the risk of infection.
So what should you do if you’re being refused your court-ordered visitation time because the other parent is using the pandemic as a justification? Here’s an overview of what you should know.
Visitation is your right
The common scenario that has been occurring is a parent claiming the stay at home order issued by a governor will supersede court-ordered visitation or timesharing schedules. However, this is not the case—court orders regarding parenting time, child custody and visitation all remain in effect and should be followed in the majority of cases, even during stay at home orders and the pandemic. Courts are firm in their opinion that it is in the child’s best interest to maintain a relationship with both parents.
The exception may be long-distance travel. If children have to travel out of state or extended distances to see the other parent, this may be of greater concern for courts during the pandemic, as flying or long drives with stops along the way would indeed pose an increased risk of infection.
If you have been refused visitation time with your children during the pandemic or have had other COVID-related disputes over visitation and custody, it is important for you to seek the assistance of an attorney to have your court order enforced. For more information, contact an experienced Long Island child custody attorney at Bryan L. Salamone & Associates.