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Do you understand direct parenting time interference?

Many families share custody and visitation rights between parents who divorce or separate. Unfortunately, some parents refuse to respect the other parent's rights to time with their child, which can lead to serious legal consequences.

When a family court issues a custody order, it is a legally binding document, not a list of suggestions about how parents should share time and access to a child. When one parent disobeys a custody order and the other parent misses out on time with their child, courts may view this as "stolen" time. Depending on the circumstances, the parent who steals the other's time with their child may face legal consequences.

If you believe that your spouse steals your time with your child, you may have grounds for legal action. Using the law to protect your rights is an important part of child custody, and a strong legal strategy helps ensure that your rights remain secure, even in difficult times. Be sure to make your legal strategy a top priority to keep your time with your child safe.

Direct interference

Direct interference occurs when one parent deprives another of their court-ordered time with their child. In some cases, this means physical custody, but it may also apply to planned visitation.

Of course, we are all human, and there are sometimes circumstances beyond our control that make it difficult or impossible to completely obey a custody order. An illness may occur, or a car battery may die, or some other event may not allow a parent to meet for a custody exchange. These things happen to all of us, and it is common to allow for these kinds of complications.

However, if a parent repeatedly shows up late to exchange custody, or simply refuses to exchange custody at an agreed upon time, this may qualify as direct interference.

Similarly, parents who take a child out of the city or state where they live may commit interference if the other parent is unaware of the trip or does not consent to it. Depending on the circumstances, this can even lead to criminal charges, if the violation is severe. In severe cases, this behavior may qualify as parental kidnapping, which is a crime that can lead to jail time.

Protecting your rights begins now

Each parent's conflicts have nuances that can affect how a court perceives their circumstances. If you suspect that your child's other parent violates your right to time with your child, you can begin protecting yourself by carefully documenting each instance of interference. If a pattern emerges, or if the other parent displays dangerous behavior, be sure to use the strength of the law to protect yourself and your child. The time you spend with your child is a gift that you only get once, and a strong legal strategy can help you protect it.

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