Are you getting parenting time?…
Far too often, I get calls from non-custodial parents, typically fathers, claiming that the custodial parent of their child is not abiding by a court-ordered parenting time (visitation) schedule or that the parties have been unable to agree to a schedule. Many times, withholding visits becomes a vehicle to exact revenge on the non-custodial parent due to the erosion (or complete implosion) of the parties’ previous romantic relationship or similar trivial issues. It’s not ok.
Any violation regarding parenting time should be reported to the court and/or your attorney of record. Complacency and inaction can be disastrous for the non-custodial parent’s case. The longer one implicitly consents to not having parenting time, the harder it will be to demonstrate to the court that the onus is on the custodial parent and the non-custodial was in fact willing to nurture a relationship with the child- an essential element of domestic relations matters. Possible remedies for these violations are make-up parenting time, modification of the order and even contempt. If a party is found to be in contempt, the court may impose monetary fines, suspension of driver’s, occupational or recreational licenses or even jail time! It is important to remember that the custodial parent can violate by withholding visitation but the non-custodial parent’s missed parenting time is also a violation.
Domestic Relations also referred to as Family law including-divorce, child custody and support can be especially tenuous and stressful matters. But it is essential that all parties and counsel remember that the goal is to serve the best interests of the children and the law presumes that it is in the best interests of the child to have a strong relationship with BOTH parents.