Can noncustodial parents increase their visitation time?

If you're like most noncustodial parents, you probably want to spend more time with your kids. Fortunately, there are some simple ways to do this, and the other parent of your child will – in most circumstances – be on board with the idea. Here are some simple ways to spend more time with your kids without making changes to your child custody agreement:

Take lunch to your kids at school

Your child will be thrilled to see you at school and proud that he or she received a visit from mom or dad.

Drive your children around town

One of the most difficult aspects of being a single parent is the driving burden. Your ex may be driving your kids to school and picking them up every day – or taking them to sports practice and other activities. Offering to relieve your ex of some of this burden will probably be well-received no matter what he or she thinks of you. Moreover, this is a great way to see your kids, chat with them, laugh with them and enjoy their presence throughout the week between your regular visitation time.

If you engage in any of these strategies without first talking it over with the other parent – or if your idea violates the terms of your custody orders – it could seriously jeopardize your current child custody and visitation rights. Therefore, before you pursue any of these time-boosting strategies with your children, discuss your ideas with a family law attorney to ensure that they are appropriate given your child custody orders. Also, if you're unsatisfied with your child custody situation, you may want to investigate whether you can pursue a legal modification to receive more time with your kids.

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