What To Do When Custody Agreements Are Violated

According to Statista, there were about 15.31 million children living with a single mother and about 3.27 million children living with a single father in the United States in 2020. During a divorce or legal separation, child custody agreements and visitation schedules are often established to outline each parent's rights, duties, and responsibilities, as well as when the child spends time with each parent. Both parents are expected to adhere to the terms of the child custody and visitation order.

If a parent violates a court order regarding a child custody agreement or visitation schedule, you are within your rights to take appropriate legal action against the delinquent parent. At Heckert & Moreland Co., LPA, we are dedicated to providing knowledgeable legal guidance and reliable advocacy to clients in child custody and visitation enforcement and modification matters. Our experienced Ohio family law attorneys can evaluate the surrounding circumstances of your unique situation, file a motion seeking the court to enforce the child custody order, and hold the delinquent parent in contempt.

Heckert & Moreland proudly serves clients across Columbus, Ohio, and throughout Central Ohio.

What Happens If A Parent Violates A Child Custody Agreement?

In Ohio, the court expects both parties to comply with the parenting plan. When one parent violates the terms of the custody agreement or parenting time, the other party can petition the court for enforcement and to hold the parent in contempt.

What Is Considered a Severe Custody Violation?

A violation occurs when one parent defies one or more terms of an existing child custody order. However, a custody violation may be considered severe if it involves any of the following:

  • A regular pattern of showing up very late or early
  • Missing visitation exchanges consistently
  • Interfering with your parenting time
  • Kidnapping the child
  • Deliberately failing to take the child to school, doctor's appointments, or court-ordered counseling sessions
  • Abusing drugs or alcohol in front of the child
  • Child abuse or neglect
  • Manipulating the child to violate the court order

A severe custody violation may expose the child to physical or mental harm or intentionally deprive the other parent of having a cordial relationship with their children. An experienced attorney can evaluate your unique situation and file a motion seeking enforcement.

Enforcement of Parenting Plan

If the court approves your parenting plan, you may be able to enforce it. Here are the steps involved in enforcing a parenting plan or child custody agreement:

File a Motion: File a motion seeking the court to enforce the child custody agreement or visitation schedule.

Proof of Allegations: Gather necessary evidence of all custody order violations. Keep copies of police reports, phone records, texts, email correspondence, and other documentation. All these will help establish your point during the court hearing.

Right of Refusal: Petition for the inclusion of the "Right of First Refusal" in your custody arrangement. This means that the other parent must first offer you the chance to look after or take care of your kids before contacting another family member or a babysitter.

Enforcing a parenting plan or child custody order often involves a lot of complexities. An experienced attorney can help file the necessary forms, complete the relevant information needed to seek enforcement, and help present your case diligently in court.

Experienced Legal Guidance You Can Rely On

Child custody agreements and visitation schedules are often established to determine parental responsibilities and the time the child spends with each parent. Unfortunately, some parents deliberately fail to follow court orders and violate custody arrangements. If your child's other parent has violated a child custody order, consulting with an experienced family law attorney is crucial to evaluate the surrounding circumstances of your unique situation and determine the best course of action.

At Heckert & Moreland, our attorneys have the necessary experience and resources for handling complex family law and divorce issues related to child custody violations. As your legal counsel, we will review all of the facts of your unique situation and explore your possible legal options. Using their extensive legal understanding, our team will guide you through the legal proceedings, help in seeking the court to enforce the judgment, or help you file a contempt action. Our attorneys will fight compassionately to protect your rights and craft a feasible solution that works best for you and your family.

Contact Heckert & Moreland Co., LPA today to schedule a simple consultation with knowledgeable child custody attorneys. Our dedicated team can offer you the detailed legal counsel, reliable advocacy, and compassionate representation you need in your case. We proudly serve clients across Columbus, Ohio, and throughout Central Ohio.


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