What Are a Father's Visitation Rights?


Quick Answer

A father's visitation right is the right to see his child during prearranged times listed in a court order or court-approved parenting plan, according to LegalMatch. If either parent violates the visitation agreement, he or she faces legal consequences.

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Full Answer

A court must determine if a father is fit before allowing visitation, reports LegalMatch. Courts evaluate fitness based on the father's relationship with his child, his finances and work history, his health and well-being and any past criminal activity or abuse. Fathers who are not married to their child's mother must establish paternity before they can file for visitation, states FindLaw

Courts may modify visitation agreements if either parent moves, if a parent's work schedule changes, or if the needs of the child change, explains LegalMatch. Parents should not enact changes to the agreement without court approval; this is a violation. Other violations include extending the visitation beyond the allowed times, being late or early to pick up and drop off the child, having an unauthorized person pick up or drop off the child, and attempting to contact or visit the child outside of the approved schedule. Consequences for violating visitation include contempt of court and criminal charges for repeat offenses.

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