Supervised Visitation: The Answer in a High Conflict Phoenix Divorce?

Supervised visitation is an option in high conflict divorces to ensure that the kids are safe and supervised when in the company of the noncustodial parent. In many cases, supervised visitation is an alternative to no visitation at all, so it is important that everyone understands the rules and works under them.

What is supervised visitation in Arizona?

The noncustodial parent has a right to visitation in Arizona, but that right can be suspended or denied in certain circumstances. Supervised visitation is a visitation limitation that means the noncustodial parent may only see the children when a third party is present to ensure that the children are safe.

What are the reasons for supervised visitation?

In general, visitation is only restricted when the child is in danger or when unrestricted visitation is against the child's best interest. Typical reasons why supervised visitation may be ordered include:
  • Violence, abuse, or physical endangerment
  • Emotional harm or abuse
  • It's what the child wants: The child's age and maturity level will be considered in this case.
  • A parent's mental illness: If the noncustodial suffers from a mental illness, he or she is not automatically restricted, but can be if the illness has the potential to cause harm to the child.
  • Substance abuse: This is especially important in cases such as alcoholism where the child is mistreated or otherwise harmed by the noncustodial parent's substance use.
  • Sexual behavior: Although it's rare for visitation to be restricted due to the noncustodial parent's relationship behavior, it is possible for the court to restrict overnight visitation if the noncustodial parent is living with an individual and it causes harm to the child in some way.
  • Parent is in prison: Incarceration does not automatically deny or limit visitation, but it can be denied if the visitation is harmful to the child.
  • Religious beliefs: If the noncustodial parent's instruction in a religious belief harms the child, then visitation may be limited.
  • Abduction threat: If there is a strong probability that the noncustodial parent will kidnap the child, visitation will be limited.

If you are involved in a Phoenix divorce and have questions about visitation, contact an experienced Arizona family law attorney at 1-888-929-5292 today. We know the divorce process is never easy, especially when there are children involved. Request a copy of our free book to help you through this difficult time: Arizona Family Law - How to Handle Tough Issues in Tough Times.