During the divorce process, parents must work out a child custody and visitation arrangement to ensure each party can maintain a meaningful bond with the children. If you cannot agree on an arrangement together, a judge will render a decision for you, examining several factors to determine what is in their best interests. However, sometimes putting a child custody order into practice may become a challenge in itself, especially if your children refuse to visit their other parent. To avoid running into some legal issues, it is important to know what to do under these unique circumstances.
Complying with the Child Custody Order
Of course, every parent understands how crucial it is to comply with the child custody order. Unfortunately, if your children try to refuse visitation, it puts you in a difficult position where you may have to exert your authority as a parent to ensure you are in compliance with the order. Generally, if your children are very young, a judge will expect you to make them reasonably available for visitation unless there is a valid reason, such as illness, why they cannot visit their other parent. If they are older, a judge may be more understanding since older teens may be more challenging to control.
However, even if your children are a little older, you should still maintain open communication with your co-parent and fully explain the situation. You might even consider inviting your co-parent to your home, so he or she can assess the situation and speak to the children about their refusal. Ultimately, as long as you show that an honest effort was made to comply with the court order, you will not run into legal issues with the court.
Why Are They Refusing Visitation?
If your children never previously refused visitation, you should have a conversation with them about it to understand the reasoning behind their behavior. Perhaps something about your former spouse’s environment changed, he or she has a new partner, or they simply no longer feel safe. Understanding why they are refusing visitation will help you assess the best resolution for the situation. If you believe their wellbeing and safety are at risk, you might have to petition the court for a modification of the child custody order.
Discuss the Details of Your Case with a Child Custody Attorney Today!
If your children are refusing to visit their other parent, and you believe the environment is no longer safe or you have concerns about finding yourself in hot legal water, you need to hire an experienced attorney. At the Law Office of Russell S. Hershkowitz, L.L.C., our experienced legal team can provide the knowledgeable guidance you need to overcome any obstacles you may face during this process. You can rely on our team to protect the best interests of your children.
Call us today at (407) 753-4111 to set up a consultation with our knowledgeable attorney.