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Parents, foster parents and visitation

We recently addressed the recent innovations a specific Florida court has implemented regarding children removed from the home. In fact, Florida is just one of a number of states are instituting programs allowing for biological parents that have lost custody of their children to interact with the foster parents of the child. These programs have been implemented in part because more than half of children in foster care will eventually be returned to their biological parents.

Until relatively recently, interaction was discouraged between birth parents and the foster family. Though this is no longer the case, arrangements like this nevertheless remain the exception.

Caseworkers and judges will often be in the middle of determinations as to how much contact the biological parents should have with the foster family. Yet for obvious reasons, parents that have been abusive to their children are not supposed to have any dealings with the foster family.

Though children and birth parents may often see each other secretly, the type of arrangement mentioned above removes any need of deception on the part of the parents or child. At least under these guidelines, case workers are better able to determine the nature of contact that is going on between parent and child.

This type of arrangement may not always be comfortable for participants in the program. Often foster parents and biological parents will not always see eye-to-eye on parenting issues, but at least case workers will be available to provide guidance.

As in all child custody circumstances, the best interest of the child is the foremost concern. Yet determining what is in the best interest of the child may vary from circumstance to circumstance.

Family law attorneys can assist both parents and foster parents in coming to the right decision when it comes to the child.

Source: The Houston Chronicle, "Agencies work to unite foster, biological parents," by Kelli Kennedy, Oct. 25, 2012

Please see our website concerning your child visitation questions.

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