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AlexiaEsq., Managing Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 13556
Experience:  19+ Years of Legal Practice in Family law matters.
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My daughter is 14 and does not want to return to her ...

Customer Question

My daughter is 14 and does not want to return to her mother''s house when my parenting time is over. What happens if she refuses to get on the plane.....the only reason she has been getting on the plane is because her mother told her that I would be put in jail.
Submitted: 9 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  AlexiaEsq. replied 9 years ago.


What a dilemma, must break your heart. Clearly your daughter wants to live with you. However, in my opinion, the best way to make that happen is to either get residential custody change through the court (you obviously have a Court Order where she lives with the mom and you get parenting time, yes?). I presume you have broached this with the mom and she refuses to allow your daughter to live with you and leave her? That being the case, I suggest making a motion to the Court. There are no sure things here, but seeing that your daughter is 14, the Judge will likely take her desires, particularly if she has the ability to state good reasons for the move, into serious consideration. Make sure there is no possibility of being accused of encouraging any negativity against mom by your daughter. Incidentally, I would even think that if your daughter told the judge herself that she never want to get on the plane home and that but for the fact that her mom told her YOU would go to jail if she didn't, she forced herself to get on that plane to go back to her mom. No judge is going to appreciate such manipulation on this child, it is quite despicable and may paint a picture of mom that is not too favorable.

As for her not getting on the plane, the danger lies potentially as it being seen as you violating the Court order by not returning her, or influencing her negatively against her mom. While you may have a legitimate defense (what are you going to do, tie her up and ship her, lol), I strongly suggest you use the legal channels of the appropriate application to the Court as soon as possible and see if it can't be resolved that way.

I wish you the best of success in doing so!

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Stephanie Joy