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Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 11823
Experience:  Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
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My ex is a police man, lives 100 miles away and the custody

Customer Question

My ex is a police man, lives 100 miles away and the custody agreement is that he sees our son on his "Days Off". He sees our son every weekend, our son is 11 and I never tried to change it to every other weekend because I support the father son relationship. from kindergarten to the end of 4th grade, dads schedule was that he had weekends off therefore visitation was easy. We worked closely when his schedule changed back to him working weekends during the summer and he saw our son mid week, no problems. Once school started and he was able to switch with a colleague so he could see our son on weekends.
I just found out dads schedule changes and he is working weekends. I have been dropping him off as it was just business as usual. My son has been coming back from dads complaining they don't do anything and he plays video games all day and then just Sunday he said they didn't even leave the house. Dad is now working from 9:00 pm to 7:00am on the Friday's, Saturday's and Sunday's our son is with him. He is home with step mom while dad is at work and then home with dad from 8:00 am to 5:00 while dad is sleeping. Prior to this shift change, we worked closely as stated.
I spoke to dad about this yesterday.
Am I correct that I am not obligated to bring him to dad on the weekends anymore because they are no longer his days off? Their relationship is very important but it is very important that our son treated fairly. What are my rights? My sons rights?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  romaellelaw replied 1 year ago.

This communication is not intended as legal advice. A local attorney should always be consulted for legal advice. No client/attorney relationship is intended or created by this communication.

Hello! Thank you for bringing your question to JustAnswer! I'll be happy to provide some valuable information!

From the details you provided, it sounds like you would NOT be violating the agreement if he technically has to work on those days (I cannot say this for sure without seeing the agreement), however, you stated that the relationship is important to you.

Perhaps you can work out another arrangement that makes more sense to you (more vacation days perhaps), I strongly recommend you consult with an attorney or mediator in your jurisdiction to get in writing.

You might also want to consider that it sounds like for the most part, the child is with him most of the day. Most 11 year olds are asleep by 9pm or 10pm. If you think about it, dad is working during the child's sleeping hours. Even if he is being left with the step mom, for the most part he is sleeping during this time. (Just something to consider).

If you are not comfortable with that, perhaps you can ask Dad about his days off and work out a new schedule based on those days if it is feasible. With regard to your child, it's really up to dad whether he wants to do things with him other than hang out at home. Maybe you can suggest he do something fun with him. If your child feels strongly about it, you may want to offer to sit with a family therapist to discuss how your son is feeling and ways in which they could spend more quality time together.

Otherwise, you would have to go to court and argue the terms of the agreement no longer serve your child's best interests because Dad's days off are during the week and Dad is 100 miles away.