New Jersey family courts consider a variety of factors, such as the age of a child and a person’s parental fitness, when deciding who gets custodial rights over said child. Once this is decided, a plan of visitation must be laid out. One of the most beneficial options for all parties is known as reasonable visitation. Under this agreement, the courts will take themselves out of the equation and allow the parents to set up their own visitation schedule. Not only does this take burdens off of the court system, but it also allows parents more flexibility.
For these types of visitation agreements to work, the parents must be willing to work together. This is essential due to the fact that reasonable visitation rests on the parents’ ability to cooperate with each other.
The custodial parent of a child will have the bulk of influence on what constitutes “reasonable” in most situations, and it isn’t necessary that they agree to the other parent’s proposed schedule. If this becomes an issue and it seems as if one of the parents is purposefully making things difficult, a judge can re-evaluate the situation and order a fixed schedule if necessary.
Custodial and visitation disputes can be difficult on the parents, but it’s often the child who ends up suffering due to this contentious situation. This is why a reasonable visitation schedule should be laid out if at all possible. If this isn’t possible, however, or an agreed upon schedule isn’t being adhered to, the courts can step in and serve as a sort of mediator. With legal help, a parent may be able to secure a fair outcome with little stress on their child.
Source: Findlaw, “The judge mentioned “reasonable visitation,” what does that mean? “, December 24, 2014