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2 Situations Where Maryland Denies Child Visitation Rights

Denied

Even when one parent receives sole custody of a child in Maryland, the other parent can typically obtain child visitation rights. These rights enable the non-custodial parent to spend time with their child and stay connected to their life. But in certain situations, the Maryland courts will usually deny child visitation rights. The first situation involves a likelihood of abuse. The second involves parents who committed murder against specific individuals.

  1. Denial of Child Visitation for Likelihood of Abuse – Maryland Code of Family Law Section 9-101 details the considerations for denying child visitation rights to a parent for likelihood of abuse. In this context, the Maryland courts must evaluate any past instances of child abuse or neglect and the future potential such harm against a child.

If there are reasonable grounds to believe that a parent committed child abuse or neglect, the Maryland courts must:

  • Determine whether such child abuse or neglect is likely to occur upon a grant of child visitation rights; and
  • Deny child visitation rights to the parent in question, unless there is no likelihood of child abuse or neglect.

In addition, Section 9-101 does furnish a narrow exception. Even if there is a likelihood of child abuse or neglect, the Maryland courts may grant child visitation rights to a parent if:

  • Child visitation assures the child’s safety and physiological, psychological, and emotional well-being; and
  • Child visitation occurs on a supervised basis.
  1. Denial of Child Visitation for Murder – Maryland Code of Family Law Section 9-101.2 provides the considerations for denying child visitation rights to a parent for murder. There are two requirements for denying child visitation under this section.

First, the parent must commit first- or second-degree murder under the laws of Maryland. Alternatively, the parent may commit a crime under other U.S. laws that would be considered first- or second-degree murder in Maryland.

Second, the parent must commit first-or second-degree murder against:

  • The other parent of the child;
  • One of their other children; or
  • Any family or household member living in the same residence.

That being said, Section 9-101.2 does provide a limited exception. The Maryland courts may grant child visitation rights to a parent convicted of murder if:

  • Child visitation is in the best interests of the child;
  • Child visitation assures the child’s safety and physiological, psychological, and emotional well-being; and
  • Child visitation occurs on a supervised basis.

Do You Need Legal Help?

For help with your case, our Bel Air child visitation attorneys are here to answer your questions. Reach out to Schlaich & Thompson, Chartered today for a consultation.

SOURCES:

mgaleg.maryland.gov/mgawebsite/Laws/StatuteText?article=gfl&section=9-101&enactments=false

mgaleg.maryland.gov/mgawebsite/Laws/StatuteText?article=gfl&section=9-101.2&enactments=False&archived=False

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