Can a parent who is deployed give his/her visitation rights to a family member?
Yes, possibly. When a parent who is deployed files a petition for custody or visitation, s/he may include a request to delegate (give) his/her visitation rights to a family member to use instead. The judge should allow the family member to use the visitation rights only if:
- the family member has an existing close relationship to the child; and
- it is in the child’s best interest.
However, if the family member wanting visitation has a history of domestic violence against a spouse, a child, or a domestic living partner, or lives with someone who does, then the judge has to assume that the family member cannot use the visitation (although the family member can present evidence to try to change the judge’s mind about this).1
1 Alaska Statute § 25.24.150(c),(g)