Family Law : Visitation

What is visitation?

When a parent is awarded custody of a child, the other parent is usually entitled to visitation rights. Under Ohio law, the usual legal term for visitation is “parenting time.”

How is visitation established?

Each county in Ohio has a “standard parenting time schedule,” which is used as a starting point by courts in setting parenting time schedules for the cases in those jurisdictions. (The standard parenting time schedules vary somewhat from county to county.)

Are there alternatives to “standard parenting time schedule?”

A court may order a parenting time schedule with terms and conditions that vary from the standard schedule. In cases involving child abuse or domestic violence, the court may restrict the abusive parent’s visitation rights. For example, the court may order supervised visitation, designating specific pick-up and drop-off points, prohibiting the parent’s consumption of alcohol or legal drugs during visitation periods, requiring the abusive parent to attend parenting classes or counseling, or prohibiting the parent from taking the children out of state.

What if a parent violates their visitation rights?

A custodial parent’s interference with the visitation rights or parenting time of the other parent may trigger a court contempt action against that parent. Such interference is also a “best interest of the child” factor that the court must consider in determining which parent should be awarded custody in any future child custody or custody modification proceedings.

I am a grandparent -- what rights do I have to visitation of my grandchild?

You must file a Motion to Establish Visitation through the court. More information about your rights is available in the Grandparent's Rights With Regard to Grandchildren brochure.

Can I visit my child if they are out of state?

Visitation with your child will be defined in your court orders.  If you have visitation with your child and the custodial parent takes the child out of the state without your prior knowledge, consult with your attorney about your options.

For more information on domestic violence visit the Ohio Domestic Violence Resource Center.

See also the Forms & Education tab in this section for more information.

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