What is parenting time and who gets it?

As of March 1, 2021, the term  has changed to . And in most situations, the term  has changed to . Now, all parents usually have parenting time.

Also, a person who isn’t a parent or step-parent may get a to spend time with a child. For example a grandparent can get this order.

Parenting time is the time that a child spends in the care of a parent after the parents separate or . A person who stands in the place of a parent, such as a step-parent, can also get parenting time.

Parenting time used to be called access for the parent who didn’t have any decision-making responsibility. Decision-making responsibility used to be called custody.

Now, all parents usually have parenting time. In most cases it’s best for a child to spend time with each parent. This doesn’t mean a child has to spend an equal amount of time with each parent. But it should be enough time to allow a child to have a meaningful relationship with each of them.

Parenting time can be on a strict schedule, such as every other weekend, or on a flexible schedule

Parenting time can be supervised or unsupervised. If you have or , this means there’s someone watching while you visit with your child.

A parent with parenting time but no decision-making responsibility also has the right to ask for, and get, information about their child’s health, education, and well-being from the other parent. They also have the right to get this information from places such as schools and hospitals. But for some health information requests, such as hospital records, the parent with decision-making responsibility on health may need to agree in writing first.

A person who isn’t a parent and who doesn’t stand in the place of a parent can ask for a contact order to spend time or keep in touch with your child . For example, a grandparent, aunt, or uncle may be able to get a contact order that allows them visits or telephone or webcam calls with your child.

Child support is separate from parenting time

The right to and the right to parenting time are 2 different issues. They are both rights of the child. A parent cannot be denied parenting time with their child because they do not pay child support. And a parent who does not have parenting time may still have to pay child support.

You can refuse to allow parenting time only in specific situations, such as if you’re afraid for your child’s safety. You may have to call your local children’s aid society if you believe your child is being abused by your partner or someone in their home. If you’re in this situation, get help right away.

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