My Wife Wants More Money and Won't Let Me See the Kids. What Do I Do?

My Wife Wants More Money and Won’t Let Me See the Kids. What Do I Do?

November 4, 2021

Co-parenting after a divorce is challenging enough without having to deal with an ex-spouse who is uncooperative or combative with regard to child custody issues. If you end up in a situation in which the other parent is withholding visitation or custody time to get back at you or to try to extort you for more money, it is important that you seek legal counsel to protect your rights.

Even if one parent has full physical custody of the child, you as the noncustodial parent still have a court-protected right to reasonable visitation. A parent who refuses to allow you to spend time with your child violates that right and the court order. Even if the child does not wish to visit you, you still have that right.

Here are a few steps you can take to resolve this type of child custody issue should it arise.

Attempt to communicate

The first step should always be to attempt to communicate with the other parent to resolve the dispute yourselves, without getting attorneys or the court involved. Stay calm and reasonable in these communications. You may be able to avoid the expense and drama associated with further court proceedings.

Seek court clarification

If communication doesn’t work, there are several legal options for dealing with visitation issues, the first of which is asking the court to clarify or resolve any problematic issues in the custody or visitation arrangement. If either partner was misunderstanding the visitation schedule, this will give you some greater clarity.

This is probably the least confrontational method of going to court over visitation issues, so if there is reason to believe the disagreement is simply over a misunderstanding of the terms of the visitation arrangement, this is the best method to employ.

Request a visitation modification

Some visitation issues are caused by scheduling conflicts. Perhaps what once worked for your schedule no longer works, or perhaps the child’s extracurricular schedule makes the prior visitation schedule more complicated than it used to be.

You can request a formal modification of the visitation schedule in court to make these modifications legally binding and protect your visitation rights.

Seek court enforcement

If you’ve attempted the other steps and still have an ex-spouse who is unwilling to work with you to create a visitation arrangement that works for everyone, you can ask the court to enforce the visitation order. Visitation orders are legally binding, and court enforcement will compel the other parent to comply, or else face certain penalties. This is where you’re most likely to need legal assistance from an attorney, as this can be a combative process.

Penalties for violating these visitation orders can include being found in contempt of court, reimbursement of attorney’s fees, made-up visitation and even potential jail sentences.

For more information about working with a child custody attorney to iron out issues with visitation, contact an experienced lawyer at the Law Office of Rob Biggers with any questions you have about this legal process. We look forward to discussing your case.

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