The Vermont Statutes Online
NOTE: The Vermont Statutes Online is an unofficial copy of the Vermont Statutes Annotated that is provided as a convenience.
NOTE: The online version of the Vermont Statutes does NOT yet include the actions of the 2023 legislative session. The 2023 updates should be available by the end of October.
Subchapter 002 : PERSONS FOR WHOM GUARDIANS APPOINTED(Cite as: 14 V.S.A. § 2667)
§ 2667. Order for visitation, contact, or information; immediate harm to the minor
(a) The Probate Division of the Superior Court shall have exclusive jurisdiction to hear any action to enforce, modify, or terminate the initial order issued by the Family Division of the Superior Court for visitation, contact, or information.
(b) Upon a showing by affidavit of immediate harm to the child, the Probate Division of the Superior Court may temporarily stay the order of visitation or contact on an ex parte basis until a hearing can be held, or stay the order of permanent guardianship and transfer legal custody of the child to the Commissioner for Children and Families.
(1) The order transferring the child’s legal custody to the Commissioner shall have the same legal effect as a similar order issued by the Family Division under the authority of 33 V.S.A. chapters 51-53.
(2) The Probate Division shall then immediately notify the Department for Children and Families, the State’s Attorney, and the Family Division when it has issued an order transferring the child’s legal custody to the Commissioner, and nothing in this subsection shall prohibit the State from commencing proceedings under 33 V.S.A. chapters 51-53.
(c) Nothing in this section shall limit the jurisdiction of the Family Division of the Superior Court to enter an abuse prevention order pursuant to 15 V.S.A. chapter 21. A breach by the permanent guardian of an order for visitation, contact or information shall not be grounds for voiding or terminating the permanent guardianship. However, the court may enforce the order with all the powers and remedies of the court, including contempt.
(d) A modification of an order of visitation or contact shall be based upon a finding by a preponderance of the evidence that there has been a substantial change in the material circumstances, and that the proposed modification is in the best interests of the child. (Added 1999, No. 162 (Adj. Sess.), § 2; amended 2009, No. 97 (Adj. Sess.), § 7; 2009, No. 154 (Adj. Sess.), § 238; No. 154 (Adj. Sess.), § 238a, eff. Feb. 1, 2011; 2015, No. 153 (Adj. Sess.), § 24.)