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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 118780
Experience:  Experienced attorney: Family law, Estate Law, SS Law etc.
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We went to court today for a pendent lite hearing for a

Customer Question

We went to court today for a pendent lite hearing for a custody case. The Judge order the following:
Ordered that the minor child shall reside primarily with practice and it is further
Ordered that the defendant shall have reasonable visitation the terms and schedule of such visitations subject to the mutual agreement of the parties
Ordered that all other relief requested by either party is deferred to the merits.
I am the Plaintiff in this case.
I then picked the child up from school which is located 1 hour away from my residence. The school is also located in another state.
I know legally a child can not attend school in a state where they do not live. So I asked to withdraw the student from school. I also explained to them since the school is over 1 hour away that it would be a burden for me to drive 4 hours a day for a child to attend preschool which is not mandatory attendance in my state (Maryland) or the state that the school is in (DC).
I was told because I did not enroll the child the other party did that I could not withdraw the child.
Also, after I returned home the school called and stated that the order that I presented did not give me custody. It only allows for the child to live with me. And I was in violation for picking up the child from school especially since I am not on the child's pick up list.
Please tell me if the school is correct in both of these issues. Do I have custody until the main court date and do I have the right to withdraw the child from school and do I have the right to pick up the child from the school.
The school said the consulted with their legal department and was told that I am wrong in all instances.
Please advise.
Submitted: 12 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 12 months ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.

You have primary custody according to that order language you stated and as primary custodian you do have rights to decide the daily affairs of the child. The school has no business getting involved in this matter and needs to honor the court orders. However, if the non-custodial parent is going to make this an issue, you need to return to court and file a motion for clarification and you need to ask the court to clarify that you have the decision rights regarding schooling and once the court clarifies the order I would also file the order in the DC court with a petition to domesticate the order in DC. This way, if the school issue comes up again in DC, you have the order already filed in the DC court for enforcement.

Yes, you have primary physical custody and you do have such rights under that wording though.