Denied visitation occurs when one parent prevents the other parent from court mandated visitation allowances with the child. This complex issue affects many families of divorce, but unfortunately is an understudied topic. Additionally, the literature that is available on denied visitation suffers from methodological challenges that are inherent to the complexity of the subject. Denied visitation is not a homogeneous event, but one that is conceptualized into two major categories: appropriate (i.e., concerning safety of the child) and inappropriate (i.e., involving interparent hostility). These two types of denied visitation are further divided into subcategories based on a review of the literature. A discussion of each is offered as well as recommendations for handling each type of situation. The implications of denied visitation on children's well-being are considered. A review of the statutes from all fifty states concerning interference and changes in custody arrangements is presented. Alternatives for managing the situation are offered.
Arnold L. Stolberg, et al., Denied Visitation, Its Impact on Children's Psychological Adjustment, and a Nationwide Review of State Code, 36 J. Divorce & Remarriage 1 (2002).