Custodial interference is where a parent refuses to honor a parent time order. Parents not following a parent time order are at risk for custodial interference. If you do not have an order, there is no custodial interference. This article will help you understand what you need to do if the other parent is refusing to let you contact the child, or what you should do if the other parent wants contact.
1. What You Should Do If You Cannot See Your Children.
This is a common problem. One parent moves out and the other has the children. The parent with the children is withholding parent time, and you are feeling powerless and are missing your children. These situations are a difficult one to bear. Unfortunately, calling the police will not help, and unless the children are in danger of immediate and irreparable harm, there’s little you can do to change things immediately.
Your best course of action if there’s no danger is to immediately file with the court. File a petition for custody or divorce and a motion for temporary orders. This is not a quick solution, but the longer you wait, the worse your position gets for custody.
One other thing you can do is ask the police to be present to keep the peace while you attempt to pick up the children for parent time. You will create a record of your attempts and may intimidate the other parent into letting you have parent time.
2. Best Ways To Avoid Custodial Interference
If you have custody of your children and the other parent is requesting time, what you have to do depends on whether you have an order or not. If there is a court order for parent time, then you need to follow the order. You are at risk of custodial interference charges unless you can show that the children are at risk for abuse if they are turned over to the other parent, and you have notified the authorities.
Where there is no order, it is in your best interest to make sure you are not withholding parent time. Although it may seem worthwhile to keep the children from seeing your soon to be ex, it could backfire on you in court. Unless you know what custody arrangement you want, or there is some danger to the children, you should give the other parent the minimum statutory amount of parent time. That means 3 hours every week and every other weekend from Friday to Sunday night.
3. What if the Children are in Danger?
If you’re in a situation where the children are in danger, then you need to act quickly. You should notify the police and the Department of Children and Family Services of the potential danger. You then will need to either pursue a protective order, a temporary restraining order or some other temporary order for custody.
What you do depends on your particular circumstances. If your children are in danger, it is highly recommended that you give us a call.