Entertainment Love and Romance Child Custody in Rhode Island Familiarize Yourself with Child Custody Laws in Rhode Island Share PINTEREST Email Print Erin Lester/Getty Images Love and Romance Divorce Relationships Sexuality Teens LGBTQ Friendship By Debrina Washington Family law attorney and writer University of Pittsburgh School of Law Skidmore College Debrina L. Washington is a New York-based family law attorney and writer, who runs her own virtual practice to assist single parents with legal issues. our editorial process Debrina Washington Updated June 27, 2019 Rhode Island uses several criteria to determine child custody. Primarily, child custody in is determined based on the best interests of the child. Parents who wish to file for child custody in Rhode Island should first become familiar with the custody statutes in this state. Best Interests of the Child A family court in Rhode Island will consider the following factors when determining the best interests of the child: The child's wishesThe parent's wishesThe mental and physical health of the parentsThe stability of the child's homeEach parent's ability to encourage and foster a relationship between the child and the child's other parent Visitation and Child Custody in Rhode Island If a parent is not granted custody of a child, a Rhode Island court will give the parent reasonable visitation unless another parent or another interested party can show that visitation will not serve the child's best interests. If a child has been physically or sexually abused by his/her parents, visitation will be denied. However, the court in Rhode Island will review the visitation request on an annual basis to determine whether the parent has rehabilitated him/herself, or whether denying visitation is in the best interests of the child. The court may also request a parent to attend counseling sessions as proof of rehabilitation. Domestic Violence and Child Custody in Rhode Island A family court in Rhode Island will consider a parent's history of domestic violence when determining child custody. If there is a proven history of domestic violence, child custody and visitation will be arranged to best protect the child and the abused parent from harm. The court will consider the parent's history of harm, bodily injury, or assault to another person. The court may choose to do the following: Send the perpetrator of domestic violence to attend and complete a certified batterer's intervention programSend the perpetrator to a substance abuse program, when appropriateRequest a bond to ensure the return and safety of the childOrder the address and telephone number of the child to be kept confidentialOrder the secure exchange of the child at a neutral drop-off location or supervised visitation Mediation and Child Custody in Rhode Island The courts may order parents to mediation when child custody and visitation issues are in dispute. In Rhode Island, all communications made by or to a mediator, or between parents, is considered confidential and may not be divulged in a court proceeding. For more information about child custody in Rhode Island, speak with a qualified attorney in Rhode Island or refer to the Rhode Island Domestic Relations statute.