The state of Texas will generally decide child custody arrangements based on what is best for the child. For this reason, a court will sometimes enforce a custody and visitation order to ensure a child can maintain a relationship with both parents.
Sometimes a parent may ignore the visitation schedule by either not showing up to pick up their child at the agreed-upon location or not allowing the other parent access to their child. What legal steps can you take when this happens?
If one parent repeatedly refuses to follow a court-ordered visitation schedule, you have a few options. When you enforce an order, you are asking a judge to force the other person to follow the decree.
Some of the most common reasons a person might seek an enforcement order are, one parent:
- attempts to change dates and/or times of visitation;
- consistently arrives late;
- threatens to discontinue visitation;
- has someone else pick up/drop off the child;
- withholds visitation as a form of punishment to the other parent;
- changes their address and does not update it with the court; and/or
- makes changes to the child’s routine that interferes with the visitation schedule.
If the above scenarios happen frequently and they cannot be resolved by the parents themselves or with a form of mediation, one parent can seek court intervention.
A parent can seek legal enforcement by asking the court to:
- alter the visitation plan;
- schedule or enforce additional visits;
- hold the primary custodial parent in contempt of court; or
- change primary custody.
Contempt of Court & Steps Needed to Enforce an Order
Contempt of court is used to enforce a court order when one person fails to abide by the terms of the agreement. Civil contempt of court is the method by which a court attempts to obtain compliance with the order.
This enables a court to:
- place the offending party in jail until they comply with the order;
- impose a fine;
- or both.
We Can Help Enforce Court Orders
Our child custody attorneys are compassionate and will work with you to determine the best course of action for your case. We will do everything in our power to pursue the most favorable outcome for you and your family.
To schedule a consultation, you can contact our firm online or give us a call at (281) 990-6025.