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Child custody vs. visitation

If you have kids and are approaching the divorce process, it is important to understand various legal terms related to family law issues involving kids. For example, you should understand the differences between custody and visitation. You should also review various aspects of the law and familiarize yourself with the process in order to secure a favorable end result.

When it comes to custody decisions, a court’s decision could impact your relationship with your child and your child’s life. This is a critical aspect of your divorce and you need to prepare carefully.

The difference between custody and visitation

The New York State Unified Court System provides a brief overview of the difference between child custody and visitation rights. Although these represent two different legal issues, decisions are typically made at the same court hearing. Child custody assigns responsibility with respect to a child’s care, whether one parent has sole custody, both parents share custody or another person is responsible for raising a child. Visitation refers to the rights of a parent who does not have custody to see their child.

Other legal issues regarding custody and visitation

In New York, courts make orders for custody and visitation that take effect until a child reaches 18. When issuing these orders, the court aims to arrange a plan that serves a child’s best interests. Courts review many factors when determining the bests interests of a child.

If your child’s other parent is refusing to comply with the terms of a court order, you should look into enforcing a custody or visitation order. Moreover, some parents can modify these orders in certain circumstances.