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Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 29565
Experience:  Attorney with experience in family law.
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The father of my child causes confusion and chaos in the life

Customer Question

The father of my child causes confusion and chaos in the life of me and my daughter. He was set to have visitation with her here in California this week. His email stated that he was visiting with her here. Instead when I went to release our daughter to him for his visitation he did not want her come outside instead he harassed me to come outside. I would not because I did not know his intentions. He had an officer at my door later which scared my daughter and I she began crying so I did not answer. Later tonight the police knocked on my door and informed me that if I did not release the child for out of state travel I would be arrested for child abduction. IHow can he legally lie about his original intention and then take the child out of State without me knowing what is going on. It was an ambush.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 2 years ago.
Hi,

My name is ***** ***** I'd be happy to answer your questions today. I'm sorry to hear that this happened.
What is your specific question about this scenario?
Did the father have reason to believe you wouldn't allow him to take the child out of state? Has this been an issue in the past? Did you tell him that you wouldn't let him take visitation at all if he wanted to go out of state?
Is there any reason to believe he's not going to bring her back if he takes her on a trip?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I told him no because he originally tried to have the child fly alone to a state that he is not from. He also last year was not coming to pick her up and was trying to have her fly alone to louisianna alone unaccompanied where he himself is not from. And our order for this year stated he had in state visitaion. which I allowed but he brought a cop to our door and scared the child and myself. He tried to last minute change the order from in state to out of state visitation. and succeeded unfortunately.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
And he did not provide me with travel details until after he had the child. I received an itinerary after he got the child. he wanted to show up last minute and change the plan to out of state. he emailed me that was in a state visit from the 23rd-25th and then on his itinerary it shows the 28th is the actual date he is leaving he gives false information all of the time and expect me to adjust to him each time regardless how the child feels or is affected by it
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you.
I'm really sorry to say this, and I know it's not what you want to hear, but - he did the right thing.
The parent who has custody at any given moment is free to travel with the child at will. He's allowed to take her out of state if he wants unless there's a court order that says he can't - and you said there wasn't. There's no need for him to lie about where he's going. But if you told him that you would NOT allow him to take the child out of state, when he had every legal right to do so, then he's allowed to bring the police with him to ensure that you follow the court order.
He tried to resolve the issue without scaring your child by asking that you come outside to talk to him, and you said that you declined. He did exactly what parents are supposed to do in this situation. Instead of arguing with you in front of the child, he brought in a third party to oversee the swap.
I'm sorry that he gave you so many problems, and this is clearly a complicated, emotional situation. But legally, what the father did is what lawyers tell parents in that situation to do every day.
Unless your court order says so, he doesn't have to tell you when he's going out of state. He's the father, and as such, he is presumed to be able to exercise his discretion in deciding where to take the child, just like you are. You do have the ability to ask that he be ordered to give you advance notice of where he's going with the child by filing a Motion for Order. Then, if he lies again, he is in contempt of court and you can ask that the judge punish him.
I apologize that this was probably not the Answer you were hoping to receive. However, it would be unfair to you and unprofessional of me were I to provide you with anything less than truthful and honest information. I hope you understand.
Good luck.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
we had a court order that stated this year he was only allowed visitation within the state and he emailed me stating that he planned to visit her here....How is that right ??? I had no prior notice that he planned to take her out of state. Also I he did not email me the itinerary until last minute after he took the child.
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 2 years ago.
You said he got a new order allowing him to take her out of state. Is that not right?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
without my knowledge . he did which should be unlawful. And it was last minute during a time that he knew I was in school
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 2 years ago.
The judge has discretion to hear an emergency ex parte order. I can't read the motion, so there's no way for me to say if that order was appropriate. What I can tell you, again, is that the father did everything he is supposed to do.
I'm sorry he lied. I'm sorry you feel betrayed. I'm sorry the two of you aren't able to work together to raise your child without him causing problems. But he IS allowed to go back to court and seen an order allowing him to travel with his daughter. If he had reason to believe you were going to refuse to allow him to take the child if you knew he was going out of state -- And I believe that, based on your own words, so I'd be very surprised to hear that he thought otherwise -- he had NO OTHER OPTION than to do what he did. If you're just looking to make him pay, I'm sorry, but I can't help you.
You have the ability to file a Motion to Vacate the order, establishing why the father should not be allowed to take your daughter to visit other states. You're allowed to argue why it is not in her best interests to go with him. If you have any reason to believe he's going to move and not come back, you can state that as well. That's the option available to you at the moment.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
meaning he original informed me of in State visitation and I complied because that is the only thing that I had prior written notice about. And then he lied of his intention and wanted to take the child out of State last minute...how is that i her best interest when it is told to her that she is only visiting him here? And the dates of his visit stated the 23rd to the 25th but later provides a itinerary after he gets the child showing he is actually leaving on the 28th
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 2 years ago.
Please read my above response, as you posted at the same time and would not have seen it.
It really, really sucks that he lied to you. And there is legally nothing you can do about it other than what I outlined above. I wish I could tell you otherwise - I can't begin to express how deeply I do not wish to argue with you. But there's no benefit to you in trying to make him pay for what he did. The thing to do is to work on ways to avoid this situation in the future, which means filing another motion.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
(Posted by JustAnswer at customer's request) Hello. I would like to request the following Expert Service(s) from you: Live Phone Call. Let me know if you need more information, or send me the service offer(s) so we can proceed.
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 2 years ago.
I apologize, but I am not able to call you. Live phone calls in the legal categories, unlike in other sections of JustAnswer, are considered the practice of law, which is forbidden by state laws. I am unfortunately not able to call you, but I am happy to continue with you in this forum. Thank you for your understanding.