What to Do When Your Ex Withholds Child Visitation

A child visitation agreement imposes the amount of time that the custodial and noncustodial parents spend with their child. However, some divorce parents just can’t seem to successfully co-parent.

If your ex has consistently refused to adhere to the details of the current custody order, feeling angry and frustrated might be an understatement. Although many noncustodial parents accept this type of behavior from their ex-spouse, it is important to understand the various options to remedy the problem.

If Your Ex-Spouse Occasionally Withholds Child Visitation

Fortunately, visitation time can be made up. Parents must work together to create specific make-up dates for lost time.

It is important for noncustodial parents to keep track of the dates and times of missed visitation in a document, such as a calendar or a journal. In the event your case goes to court, you will have the proper evidence to get the make-up dates scheduled or obtain a modification on the current order.

If you request make-up dates for missed visitation and your ex-spouse still refuses to reschedule, you must contact a lawyer for help. Your attorney can reach out to the custodial parent (or the custodial parent’s lawyer) with a letter with explains that you are willing to go to court to enforce your rights if interference with visitation continues. A demand letter might be enough to encourage the custodial parent to comply with the visitation order and schedule make-up time.

If Your Ex-Spouse is Consistently Withholding Visitation

On the other hand, if the letter wasn’t enough to coax any action from your ex-spouse, remember that visitation that is consistently withheld is a violation of a court order. Your attorney can file a court petition to enforce visitation rights. In some cases, noncompliance with a visitation order can result in the judge making a custody change. Additionally, denial of visitation can result in contempt of court, punishable by jail time.

If you are interested in modifying your current divorce decree or child custody order in San Diego, contact Cage & Miles, LLP and speak with our experienced divorce attorneys today.

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