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Ask Steven K. Your Own Question
Steven  K.
Steven K., Family Law Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 2323
Experience:  I have practiced family law since 1996, focusing on child custody and domestic violence
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Child custody issue... Father filed for emergency temporary

Customer Question

Child custody issue...
Father filed for emergency temporary custody of 2 year old, with TRO agaisnt the mother. Since the court has dismissed the TRO and granted mother with visitations up to 3 times a week and 2 hours each time. And the judge ordered both parties to medation to solve custody. Mother filed for divorce 5 months prior to this current case. Judge also granted mother with phone calls anytime anyday to child. Medation took place and father stone walled the entire time. Mother asked for more time with baby. Since medation a court date has not yet be given. Mother is asking Father for more time with baby.
My quesion is this--- Father says he will get in trouble with the court he thinks if he grants mother more time with child, without the judges order to do so. Is this true or does he have the power to work something out with mother????
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Steven K. replied 6 years ago.
He does not "get in trouble" for giving mom more time (unless he is somehow endangering the child). However, it could prevent him from limiting mother's time in the future. For example, if he allows mother to have more time and then complains that the mother should not be allowed so much time, the court will probably not buy his argument. I think it is much more likely that father is using this as an excuse because he does not want to give mom more time. The whole point of mediation is to make a new order so that the court doesn't have to. The courts LOVE when parties resolve issues in mediation and let them off the hook! That's why they require mediation. I would recommend filing an Order to Show Cause and Application for Order to Show Cause asking for more time with the baby. I suspect that father will oppose this request so you will need to show why it is appropriate for mom to have more time with the baby.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I did forget to add that temporary visitations are supervised, does this make that manditory? or could dad let baby go to moms home for lets say a afternoon with out dads mom watching it all?
Expert:  Steven K. replied 6 years ago.
If the court order says visitation is supervised, he would be ill advised to allow unsupervised visitation. He would not go to jail or pay a fine, but the court could be very angry with him and might not grant him continuing supervised visitation if he did so. Or, if the Court felt that he was not protecting the child, the Court could refer the child to Children's Protective Services and the child could become a ward of the court. Then, neither parent would have custody and the matter would have to be addressed in dependency court instead of family court.

I have seen people allow parents to have unsupervised visitation even though the court order only allows supervised visitation and nobody got in trouble. However, that is usually in a situation where the real reason for the supervision no longer exists and the parties simply never bothered returning to court to change the order. Usually, a great deal of time has passed.