Charged With a Sex Crime: Can I Still See My Kids?

(U.S. Family Law and generally) Being charged with a sex crime will impact every area of your life, including visitation rights with your children. How it impacts your visitation rights will most likely depend on the seriousness of the conviction.
According to the Orlando Criminal Team, a law firm in Florida, being convicted of a sex crime can lead to very serious consequences. This can range from fines to jail time or probation over a long period of time.

In most cases, visitation privileges will be limited to supervised visits with your children. This may mean hanging you with them at the house of your ex-spouse, or visiting them in the presence of a counselor. If your sex crime was considered heinous, your visitation rights may be denied altogether.

Many Different Points To Consider

This is a very broad subject, and many of the points will be based on local ordinances and state-specific laws. It is very hard to give one “over all” answer to this scenario because so many different factors come into play.

For instance, in some states, if the sex offender was convicted of committing an act upon a minor that was outside of the marriage or on an adult, they cannot be denied visitation rights. In other states, visitation rights are automatically suspended with any type of conviction.

In most cases, sex offenders that commit crimes against children less than 14 years of age seem to have the most difficulty in establishing visitation rights with their children. Additionally, those who are convicted under any child pornography laws, even if they never touched a real person, will have a very hard time getting the Court to approve visitation.

Visitation rights may also be changed if an additional offense occurs after the person has been convicted or paroled.

Role Of The Ex-Spouse

The ex-spouse or partner in this relationship may also play a very large role in the decisions of the Court. If the former spouse feels that regardless of what the legal status is of the conviction the other parent poses a threat to the child(ren), the Court will consider their opinions above the convicted offender.

On the other hand, if the former partner believes that the convicted offender does not pose any real harm to the children, the Court will also take this into consideration. One classic example of this is a man who is 44 years old and is convicted of having sex with a 16 year old girl that he believed was 18 at the time. This is considered statutory rape, even though it was under false pretenses and consensual at the time. In the eyes of the Court, he is now a convicted sex offender. However, in the eyes of his ex-spouse, he is just a fool and no danger to her children.

Sex offenders who want to be a part of their children’s life should not give up hope. They will need to seek a defense attorney that is familiar with sex offender cases and approach the Family Court to request that their visitation rights be granted or restored. According to the Orlando Criminal Team, a law firm that specializes in this type of situation, ”sex crimes are aggressively prosecuted.” Those seeking representation should look for an attorney that is equally as aggressive for the best results.