I am a Mom that has only 8 hours a week supervised visits and can't afford it. I really just want to have 50/50, full custody or at least not need to pay to see my child. Court documents say I need to have a supervised visits. What can I do to lower the cost or have it removed completely?
Family Law Attorney
The court is not going to change its order absent a substantial change in circumstances--it found that there was a need for the child's well-being for your contact to be supervised, so whatever the reasoning behind that was (review the "191" factors in your parenting plan, those are the legal grounds for restricting visitation, things like domestic violence, neglect, substance abuse, etc), you need to be able to prove to the court that it is no longer a problem because you have taken significant steps towards fixing it (like going to treatment, taking classes, etc.). However, most of the time when a parenting plan requires supervised visits, there is a requirement of a certain number of visits or duration of these arrangements that you must successfully complete before a change will be considered--it will be a test period to show you can interact with the child and not cause any harm. Even if you believe you are not a harm to your child, the fact that the judge has ruled otherwise presents a significant obstacle. You could ask the court to allow a different supervisor (check out different services, see if perhaps they have a sliding scale: http://www.familylawcasa.org/supervised-visitation-services/), or ask that it be a family member or trusted member of the community instead of a professional, but you would need to be able to show that it would be just as safe for the child, which depends on the circumstances.
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Child Custody Lawyer
Its a court order -- you can't change it unless you file a Petition to modify the PP if it is a final PP or if trial is pending, you have the opportunity to file a motion for revision 10 days after the order was entered.
Please note that THESE COMMENTS ARE NOT INTENDED AS LEGAL ADVICE and are for informational purposes only. This response is not intended to create any attorney-client relationship and is only based on the limited facts given. The response might change should additional facts be learned and should not be relied on as legal advice. It is recommended that you consult with an attorney who can properly assess the situation, as well as all pertinent facts, prior to taking any action based on the foregoing statements