It’s become common to read that today’s children are more intelligent than those of previous generations. Play-time now includes interacting with computer devices that, according to some studies, accelerate learning even for toddlers. Whether true or not, Alberta children who undergo displacement when their parents divorce are not less immune to the stresses associated with child custody issues.
Courts regard the global well-being of minor children very seriously. Indeed, their welfare is considered over and above parental preferences, which may seek to significantly alter a child’s relationship with a parent. The obvious and most dramatic decision would concern guardianship, or physical custody, of a child. However, once residence is settled, other unforeseen issues might emerge.
A case in point is when a custodial parent finds the logistics of visitation with the contact parent inconvenient or emotionally trying. The guardian parent may apply to reduce, or even stop, all visitation — something the court would perceive as pernicious to a child’s development. While holding custody may seem to a guardian parent as higher legal ground, Alberta law sets and treats wholesome and continuous relationships with both parents as its ultimate standard, not physical custody.
In the eyes of the law, parenting time, with each parent, is essential. Resources exist inside and outside the Alberta family law courts to help address episodic conflicts arising from lifestyle or other changes. A family law attorney familiar with court-ordered as well as alternative conciliation routes, such as mediation, might help forestall unexpected issues concerning visitation contact and child custody.
Source: alberta.ca, “Enforce parenting time“, Accessed on Jan. 9, 2018