Supervised Visitation and Exchanges FAQ
Supervised Visitation is contact between a noncustodial party and one or more children in the presence of a neutral third person. At Y-Empowerment, we provide Supervised Visitations conducted by Professional Child Visitation Providers. The roll of the Provider is to ensure the safety of the children, both parents and themselves over the course of the visitation. Our goal is to form a safe, affordable, fun and welcoming environment for all parties in the matter, especially the children.
We want to thank you for contacting our office regarding supervised visitation and/or exchange services for you and your child/ren. We understand this may be a difficult time for you and your family, so our goal is to try to support and facilitate your visitation with your children, if possible, and when appropriate.
How to get started:
To begin the supervised visitation and/or exchange process with us, our website has information and materials needed. This includes required forms we need for you to complete and submit to us as part of a required intake process. An Intake is the gathering of information about you and your case to determine the safety needs involved for the court-ordered supervised visitation/exchange service and whether the agency can reasonably ensure the safety of everyone involved. The purpose of the intake is to help guide our review process to decide whether we can or cannot provide services to you and your family. California law requires this comprehensive intake screening process before we provide services. Please see this requirement under Standard 5.20 of the California Standards of Judicial Administration (Uniform Standards of Practice for Providers of Supervised Visitation).
Referrals We Can and Cannot Accept
We accept all cases for referral. However, we no longer provide off-site visitation services. Off-site supervised visitation means that the supervised visit between you and your child/ren occurs out in the community, such as in a park, theater, library, restaurant, or other public area. Additionally, we cannot provide supervised visitation and/or exchange services without a court order.
Hours of Operation:
We offer supervised visitation and/or exchange services during the following hours:
Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Saturday and Sundays 9-7, Times may vary. Phone lines are M-F 9-5 only.
Please review your court order to determine whether services can or cannot be provided to you based on our hours of operation. If your court order offers visits that do not match our hours of operation, we will not be able to provide services to you without a new court order and/or signed agreement called a “stipulation” that is signed by both parents and filed with the court. Please talk with an attorney.
Intake Process: (Link at bottom of page)
Under Standard 5.20, we are required to conduct a comprehensive intake, with both parents, separately. The purpose of the intake process to gather information from both parents regarding the case for safety screening to determine case acceptance or case denial. If you or the other parent is not able to complete the intake process, the agency will not be able to provide service. We will keep a record of all contact made by you and the other parent regarding your efforts in trying to schedule [a] separate intake. The contact information will be recorded whether we accept your case or decline services for you and your family.
The intake process generally takes several weeks and depends on the extent of information received from you and the other parent. There is a nonrefundable intake fee of $45 to be paid after acceptance and to set up Orientation and it is payable by the person that is listed in the court order to pay for supervised visitation/exchange services. If your court order does not provide specific information regarding who should pay for the supervised visitation and/or exchange service, then you must go back to court regarding issues related to the fee or costs for services. Once the intake process has been completed, we will call you and inform you of the agency decision to accept your case or why we cannot your case.
After we conduct a review of each parent’s information, our office will contact you to let you know whether we can or cannot accept your request for services. If we decide that service delivery can be provided to you and your family, we will schedule an orientation session with you, the other parent, and the child (if child is of sufficient age and capacity—this means able to understand for their age). The orientation interview will be conducted separately from the other parent and the parent that has physical custody of the child (this means who the child is currently living with now) is responsible for bringing the child to the orientation session.
The purpose of the orientation is to: (1) go over the rules and guidelines for services; (2) provide you with a tour of the agency facility; (3) have you sign the contract or program service agreement including answering any additional questions or concerns you may have before we schedule your first visit or exchange with the child/ren. The orientation session with you generally takes approximately an hour and half, but this will depend on the number of questions and information provided to us during the orientation. Information regarding the orientation will only be sent to you if we agree to accept your case. Remember we cannot provide services or schedule the supervised visit/exchange between you and your child until the intake and orientation processes has been completed by both parents and the child.
What Happens Next:
Upon (or during the orientation) completion of the orientation process, we will schedule your visit. In the meantime, each parent should review the policy and procedures and guidelines for the visit. If you or the other parent goes back to court, please let the agency know to determine next steps.
If you should have any questions about the enclosed materials or need additional information, please do not hesitate to contact us; otherwise we look forward to speaking with you soon.
Thank you again for considering us for meeting your supervised visitation and/or exchange service needs for you and your family.
Before contacting our facility to set up visitation, please be aware that both parties must complete intake at least one week prior to setting up your visitation. In order to set up an intake, you must already have the following:
•Current Court Order
•Picture of children visiting (Provided by Custodial Parent)
•Proof of Income (Provided by the party responsible for service fees)
Once you have obtained all of the above, you must call our office to schedule an intake appointment; there are no walk-ins.
Intake fee must be paid prior to intake being scheduled. Once intake is scheduled, you must call at least 24 hours in advance to cancel. If not canceled within 24 hours, your payment will be forfeited. Remember our office is open by appointment only. Call 661.324.5437
Why do I have to pay to see my children?There are two types of Supervised Visitations; Non-professional Providers such as a family or friend that will do your visitations for free, or a Professional Visitation Provider who gets paid for services. If the courts ordered you Professional Visitations, you would be subject to their fees.
What if I can not afford to do my visitations is there a fee waiver?If you are unable to afford to do your visitations and have no one to help you, you must address it with the court. There are no fee waivers for Supervised Visitations, but we offer a sliding scale fee option based upon your income.
Do I have to do the full amount of time of visitation I was given by the judge, if I can't afford to?No, we understand that not everyone can afford a full day of visitation. We require only a minimum of an hour visitation to schedule.
Does the court send my information to your agency?No, it would be your responsibility to obtain your necessary information and bring them to us.
How soon can I get my visitation or exchange set up?After both parties have completed their intake, a week from that date we would be able to put you on the calendar as it falls in line with your court order. (Example) If your court order says you have 1st, 3rd and 5th weekends and your intakes are completed on the 3rd week, you would not be scheduled until the 5th weekend.
When do I pay for my visitation or exchange?Your visitations must be paid a full week in advance. For the weekends you must pay by the Friday prior before 5:00 p.m. No exceptions.
How do I receive my visitation or exchange reports?We only provide electronic reports via email or the website portal.
Can my visitation be offsite?If your court order specifically says you have us as the visitation provider and you want offsite it would have to say in the order you are able to do offsite visitations.
Do I have to interact with the other party?No. Interaction between both parties is prohibited. There are two separate entrances and if there any intentional interactions by the parties services will be terminated.
My visitation or exchanges was terminated by your agency. Can I come back and start them again?No would be the general answer. But depending on the circumstances of the reason for termination, we may consider allowing them to start again.
Can the staff serve the other party or can I hire someone to serve them during the visit or exchange?No, serving of documents at our facility is absolutely prohibited. You must not use our facility or the surrounding entrances and parking area as a place to serve. If this occurs the visitation or exchange services will be terminated.
If my child doesn't stay for the whole visitation or does not come to the exchange, do I get a credit and/or refund?No, unfortunately upon scheduling your visitation there is a specific monitor assigned and your spot is secured. The monitors only come in specifically to do your visitations, and your spot cannot be filled. If you or the custodial party feels the child is not going to stay, we suggest starting off your visitations with fewer hours. It is up to you what amount of time you would like to set, but we only suggest starting off with an hour until the children feel comfortable and work up to the amount of time given.
What can I bring to the visitation?You can bring things that you know your children would like (Unless specified at your intake) such as toys activities and food. It is your responsibility to provide for your children over the course of the visitation time. We provide some games and activities, but they are subject to use. If a visiting family does not take care of our activities, they will no longer be able to use them and would need to rely on their own.
Why do I have to clean up my mess?We are here to monitor your visitations only. We do not clean after you or get things for you. You must clean after your visitation (wipe down the table, throw away the trash, put toys back in the designated spot, and vacuum) beginning 15 minutes to the end or your visitation. Monitors will give 15-minute warning. Failure to do so will result in termination. It is imperative for you to clean after your visitation as the next family coming in should be able to enter into a clean room.
What if I want to use another supervise visitation provider for my visitations/exchanges?If a person wants to switch to a different supervised visitation provider they would need to contact the court.
I am a custodial parent, do I have to complete my intake if the other party hasn't?It is encouraged to do your intake, but not necessary if the other party hasn’t. Unfortunately, not everyone ordered to do visitations follow through. We require that if it has been more than 6 months of inactivity that another intake would have to be scheduled. If the other party is required to pay, we do not do the intake unless it is paid. If the Noncustodial parent completes their intake and leaves your contact information with us, we will contact you to set up your intake. If they do not have your contact information, it would be your responsibility to check in to see if they have come in. We do not do any reports or information gathering unless there is an intake done. If you would like documentation, you would need to complete an intake.
Can I bring other friends and/or family to my visitations?Visitations are specifically for the noncustodial parent and their children. If they would like to have additional people approved, it must state that they can come in the court order or they can be approved by the Custodial party. If not stated in the court order, the noncustodial parent must notify our facility at the time of setting up visitation to get approval from us.
How do I enter the building?We are a secured building and there are no walk-ins. We are by appointments only. During your intake, you will be given instructions on how to enter.