The difference between reasonable and fixed visitation

| Feb 10, 2021 | Family Law |

Many parents work hard to prioritize time with their children during and after a divorce. However, there can be some confusion when it comes to dealing with things like child custody agreements and visitation schedules. For example, some parents might be struggling with the difference between reasonable and fixed visitation.

Some judges in North Carolina prefer to leave the matter of visitation up to parents. This approach is called reasonable visitation, and it means that the custodial parent has a greater amount of leverage to either deny or allow visitation time. Reasonable visitation might be a good fit for parents who:

  • Are willing to work together
  • Can communicate well
  • Agree on their child’s best interests

With fixed visitation, a judge orders when the noncustodial parent is to have visitation time. In some cases, the judge might also order where the visitation is allowed to take place. Fixed visitation is usually best when parents are unwilling to cooperate with one another or are still experiencing a lot of conflict.

Whether parents have a reasonable or fixed visitation schedule, it is still important that the noncustodial parent be allowed to exercise his or her parental rights. If the visitation schedule is unfair or not in the child’s best interests, it may be best to address the matter in a timely manner. In North Carolina, this usually involves asking the court for a modification of the order.