The recently enacted legislation seeks to ensure a better balance in child custody arrangements for Missouri parents.

The recently enacted legislation seeks to ensure a better balance in child custody arrangements for Missouri parents.

St. Louis, MO- Among all the issues associated with divorce, child custody is one of the most combative issues couples face. One aspect of child custody that causes constant problems is a visitation and some arrangements leave a parent feeling more like a stranger than a parent. Recent Missouri legislation aimed to remedy the disparity in child visitation agreements and give each parent equal visitation time. Here, our team of divorce lawyers will discuss visitation and what the newly passed legislation means for you.


Parents can work with their respective attorneys to develop a balanced visitation schedule.

Shared parenting law

In 2016, Missouri legislators passed the shared parenting law to ensure one parent is not given more time to a child than another parent. The law says that courts must consider relevant factors to determine a custody arrangement and prohibits family courts from assuming one parent based on their sex should be given more visitation. Instead of focusing on gender, the law instructs the court to decide visitation schedules based on each parent’s work schedule, their residence and proximity to a child’s school, the St. Louis Dispatch reports.

Under the new law, the court must consider relevant factors and enter written findings of fact and conclusions of law. It also prohibits a court from presuming that one parent, based solely on his or her sex, is more qualified than the other parent to act as custodian for the child.

Legislation to make child visitation more balanced has become more common across the country because of imbalances in custody arrangements which tend to favor women.

Child visitation schedules in St. Louis

If a couple is granted joint custody, they must come up with a schedule that includes equal or nearly equal time with each parent. Parents must come up with a weekly schedule for daily and overnight visits. Visitation schedules can be flexible and take each parent’s work schedules into consideration and if a couple can agree.

Child visitation can be hard to resolve unless a couple gets the assistance of a St. Louis divorce lawyer in St. Louis.

Do I need the family court to develop a visitation/custody schedule?

The fact is, family courts in Missouri are fine with parents coming up with a visitation schedule without input from the court. Once you and your ex-spouse agree on visitation, you must get the approval of the court before it is valid.

Speak with a divorce attorney in St. Louis

If you need assistance with child custody or a visitation schedule, USAttorneys suggests you speak with divorce attorney Barbara Behrens. She has been serving clients in St. Louis with their divorce or child custody problems. You can have more input if you enlist one of our experienced lawyers. You can contact her Missouri office by calling 314-499-6999. Set up a consultation today.