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Visitation Rights

How to Get Child Visitation Rights in North Carolina

Assisting clients in gaining visitation rights and protecting the best interests of the child in Raleigh & surrounding areas

After a divorce, children still need both parents and others who play important roles in their lives, such as grandparents. For more than 60 years, Hatch Little & Bunn, L.L.P. child visitation rights lawyers  in Raleigh have kept everyone focused on the best interests of the children and solutions that work  for all parties.

North Carolina courts determine child custody according to the child’s best interests. The child custody agreement or court order designates the child’s legal and physical custodian. Visitation rights are also specified accordingly.

Visitation for the non-custodial parent

In North Carolina, the non-custodial parent is typically awarded visitation rights. In your divorce or custody case, the court considers several factors when settling your child’s visitation schedule, including:

  • Child’s school and activities schedule
  • Child’s age
  • Availability of each parent
  • Distance between the two homes

By law, the non-custodial parent with parental rights is automatically eligible for visits with the child every other weekend. If the non-custodial parent wants additional time, an agreement must be reached with the parent who has primary physical custody. If two parents cannot agree, the non-custodial parent may file a visitation complaint with the court to request increased visitation time. In some North Carolina districts, the court requires mandatory mediation for parents before the court decides on visitation issues. There are no set limits on how much time each parent may receive for visitation under state law.  Parents can also choose mediation voluntarily through the North Carolina Court System’s Child Custody and Visitation Program.

It is possible for a judge to order no visitation or supervised visitation when there are allegations of:

  • Physical abuse
  • Sexual abuse
  • Drug abuse
  • Child abuse

When you need experienced representation to negotiate a visitation agreement or to guide you through the court process, we can help to protect your rights in North Carolina.

Do grandparents have rights in North Carolina?

Grandparents play in an important role in a child’s life. If you are a grandparent and want either visitation or custody rights, our family lawyers help you understand the law governing grandparents’ rights in North Carolina, the legal process you will have to undertake and your legal options.

The law allows biological grandparents to bring an action for the visitation of a grandchild under certain conditions:

  • Parents are divorcing and the custody of a child is at issue in an ongoing proceeding
  • Custody of a child has been determined
  • Grandparents petition the court to amend visitation with a motion showing changed circumstances
  • Child is adopted by a stepparent or relative and a substantial relationship exists between the grandparent and the child

Secure the visitation rights you seek with the help of experienced Raleigh family law counsel

At Hatch, Little & Bunn, LLP, we have been providing comprehensive legal services to individuals seeking visitation rights with their children and grandchildren in Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill, Research Triangle Park, Wake County and throughout North Carolina.  Call 919-899-9827 today, or contact us online to schedule a consultation with one of our attorneys.