Vancouver Mandarin Chinese Access and Visitation Lawyer

Vancouver Mandarin Chinese Access and Visitation Lawyer

Vancouver Mandarin Chinese Access and Visitation Lawyer Featured Image

Access rights, also known as parenting time or visitation rights, are given to the parent who does not receive physical custody of a child. While Canadian courts vastly prefer parents to agree to joint physical and legal custody (50/50 agreements, or close to them), sometimes it simply is not possible to do this.

Our team of family law experts speaks fluent Mandarin Chinese, which means we’re ready to go over your options in the language you’re most comfortable speaking. This gives you a better chance of getting an access agreement you can live with. 

How Parenting Time is Determined in Vancouver

The non-custodial parent has a right to “reasonable and liberal” parenting time, but the exact amount will be set by the court as is determined to be in the best interests of the child. Many courts will try to get as close to 50% as possible, but this is not always the case. The courts also recognize that “not all time is equal in value or utility.” 

The amount of access can also be determined via negotiation while creating a divorce settlement. However, a judge may modify the agreement if they feel the amount of time is not in the best interests of the child.

In general, you should aim for the non-custodial parent to see their child at least 30% of the time, if not more. 

Setting Parenting Time Schedules

Schedules should be part of your formalized divorce arrangement. 

A schedule should include where the child will be each day of the week, on each holiday, school break, and vacation, as well as for other special events. It should also include rules on who pays for travel expenses, if applicable, and rules for transporting the child, if not.

It should also include how disputes will be resolved prior to having to involve the courts. 

Prior to finalizing the divorce, the courts may order an interim parenting time schedule that must be followed during the separation. 

Modifying Parenting Time

It may be possible to change a parenting time plan in a case where circumstances change. For example, in an approved relocation it will be necessary to modify parenting time agreements to ensure the child continues to get time with their parent.

If you are attempting to modify custody arrangements, see Vancouver Mandarin Chinese Child Custody Lawyer. 

Parenting Time Resources

In general, we try to encourage our clients to make co-parenting run as smoothly as possible. Doing so can work in their favor if disputes arise later, and is of course generally in the best interests of the children. Most parents care deeply about their children’s well-being and want to do whatever it takes.

To this end, here are some resources that could help.

  • Co-Parenting Calendars for Kids – Helps kids adjust to co-parenting schedules and may reduce instances that cause kids to claim they don’t want to see the other parent. 
  • Fayr – A Co-parenting app that helps parents communicate, helps manage parenting time schedules, and even offers a way to categorize and monitor expenses and save receipts so that parents know where child support money is going. A geo-location log helps both parents feel safe about where their child is. There’s also a file vault for photos, agreements for pick-ups and drop-offs, report cards, and more. The reports they keep can serve as valuable evidence if you need to go back to court with a dispute.
  • Sample Parenting Time Schedules – A great resource for negotiating co-parenting agreements, as it offers 7 different schedules.  
  • How to Co-Parent as Allies, Not Adversaries – A TED Talk 

The court may also require both parents to take classes on co-parenting so as to make the entire process easier for any children involved in the divorce. 

FAQ

Can a custodial parent stop visitation?

No. Once the divorce decree is finalized, visitation is secured by a court order. You may call upon the courts to enforce that order if the custodial parent attempts to stop visitation at any point. 

This is true even if you are behind on your child support obligations, even if the child doesn’t want to see you, and even if the custodial parent is angry with you. Visitation is a right secured by law, not a privilege granted by the custodial parent. 

What is a 211 report?

An s.211 report is a report prepared by a psychologist after visiting with the child and both parents, as well as after visiting both homes. These reports may be ordered during child custody cases, in cases where co-parenting agreements break down, and in cases where one party is asking for a modification to access arrangements. 

Either parent, or both of them, may be required to pay for a 211 report if the court orders one. We may also recommend you obtain one in the event that a dispute arises. If the 211 report does not favor your position, we as your family law lawyers can call the 211 expert into court to cross-examine them in front of a judge. 

Can I get supervised visitation rights?

It is very rare for parents to be denied any access at all. Supervised visitation is the norm even when serious issues exist. It would take truly extraordinary circumstances to deny you even supervised visitation. 

If you have been deemed a danger to your child in the past such that you were denied visitation altogether you will require a court order to modify this arrangement. You might have to show that you completed a successful rehabilitation program, sought counseling, or made some other positive improvement.

How does supervised visitation work?

A third party professional from a court-approved program will be present while you spend time with your child. They will ensure the child’s physical and emotional wellbeing while they spend time with you.

The location of the visit does not matter, but the third party professional will need to be present from start to finish. Some do offer a therapeutic setting where you can spend time with the child.

Your court order will outline who has to pay for the professional. It could be you, it could be your spouse, or you both could end up having to share the costs. 

At what age can a child refuse to see a parent in BC?

No child may do this before they reach the age of 18, and a child’s wishes are not sufficient reason to deny parenting time. The custodial parent is expected to require the child to see the non-custodial parent.

This isn’t always easy; as children grow it certainly can become very difficult to force them to visit with their parent. 

Nevertheless, if it becomes a persistent problem or is used as an excuse, you can go to the court to ensure that your parenting time is enforced. 

How long does a parent have to be absent to lose rights in Canada?

A parent who has had absolutely no contact with their child for six months or more may be vulnerable to losing access to their children. At that point, courts may determine that spending time with you is no longer within the child’s best interests. 

Losing guardianship rights does not relieve a parent of guardianship responsibilities. For example, they will still be legally obligated to pay child support.

See: Vancouver Mandarin Chinese Child Support Lawyer.

What happens if the other parent doesn’t return the child in time? 

It depends on the severity of the lateness and whether the lateness represents a persistent pattern. You should document all parenting time so that you can show a pattern if necessary.

In some cases the custodial parent may be able to involve the courts if the child is repeatedly returned late. The courts may then enforce the co-parenting agreement or reduce access to encourage the parent to respect the court’s wishes.

In extreme cases, the parent will have the right to contact the authorities, and the parent who has failed to return the child in a timely fashion could face a charge of parental kidnapping. 

What happens if the other parent doesn’t show up for visitation?

There are a number of steps the courts might take. They may order the absentee parent to reimburse the custodial parent for travel expenses, child care expenses, or lost wages that occurred as a result of the missed parenting time. They may require you to attend counseling.

In extreme cases, the judge might remove your access to the child altogether, deeming it to no longer be in the best interests of the child. This is because repeatedly entering and leaving a child’s life can be traumatic for the child. 

Get Help Today

We have helped thousands of Vancouver divorcees navigate access and visitation issues. We are responsive, caring, and work hard to help protect your relationship with your child. 

Chinese Lawyer Vancouver serves clients in Vancouver, Abbotsford, Langley, Surrey, and White Rock. Call to set up an appointment today.

Get In Touch

We really appreciate you taking the time to get in touch. Please fill in the form.

6337 198 St Suite 101/B, Langley, BC V2Y 1A7, Canada

Contact a lawyer now

Our Other Locations

Copyright © 2024 Mandarin Chinese Divorce Lawyers Vancouver, All rights reserved.

95 FF3, App Street Avenue
NSW 96209, Canada

Opening Hours:

Mon – Fri: 8:00 am – 6:00 pm

City News & Updates

The latest Egovt news, articles, and resources, sent straight to your inbox every month.

[mc4wp_form id="228"]

Please note: The information provided on this website is Not Legal Advice. The information may or may not be accurate. The information is for discussion purposes only. Reliance upon any information provided would not be grounds to advance a claim against Chinese Lawyer Vancouver for providing any advice. In order to get a formal legal opinion upon which you may rely about any specific fact scenario, you would have to first retain the services of a lawyer and request a formal legal opinion.