Segal Law – What are your parental rights?

August 11, 2022 Blog No Comments »

Going through a separation or divorce can be tough on everyone involved, including any children the separating partners have. As you go through custody agreements and arrangements, you may feel that you’re being taken advantage of or that your rights are not honoured. Here is what you need to know about your parental rights regarding the custody of your children.

Following the agreement

If you and your former spouse agreed to a particular custody arrangement and visitation schedule, then you are bound to that agreement outside of any legal amendments.

If your spouse is not following the agreement you both came up with, you need to contact your lawyer. You have the right to see your child(ren) as agreed upon, and both sides must honour that.

Medical and legal guardian decisions

Pending custody arrangements, a biological parent has the right to be involved in medical and legal decisions regarding their child(ren). These decisions may include health, education and religion, among other areas of importance to the child(ren) involved.

If your case goes to court, the courts might assign this decision-making responsibility to one or both parents or maybe even a non-parental family member. If you have agreed upon a custody arrangement without going to court, both parties involved are bound by what the agreement says.

Parenting time 

This refers to the time your child spends in your care, even if they are not physically with you (like when they are in school). You have the right to parenting time with your child unless the court has decided it is not in the child’s best interest.

This is different from the custody arrangement, but it may go in conjunction with it. Each parent has the right to parenting time with their child(ren), so if your former spouse is trying to withhold your parenting time with your child(ren) then you have the right to fight that.

If there are safety concerns, there may be the option to have supervised parenting time to prove that you are safe to parent the child(ren) on your own. When it’s supervised, it means that someone else must be present while you interact with your child(ren). This may be a social worker or court-appointed representative. It could also be a grandparent, aunt, uncle, or another family member; this will very much depend on the situation and what the court deems acceptable.

Parenting orders

The courts give this order, and it clearly outlines decision-making responsibility and parenting time for both parents of the child(ren), and it can be enforced by the courts if one side is not following it.

If you and your former spouse have not been able to agree on an arrangement, then you may need to go to court to have something in place. This can be helpful when partners cannot decide independently and the separation or divorce escalates emotionally.


Contact Segal Law today

As a parent, you have rights to your children even if you are not in a relationship with their other parent. If you believe your parental rights are being infringed on, it’s essential to consult with a family lawyer as soon as possible. For help with your parenting situation, contact the professionals at Segal Law today.

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