Parenting time refers to the amount of time the non-custodial parent spends with the child. Disputes regarding parenting time often develop when parents ask the court for a divorce. If the two individuals are not able to reach an agreement in terms of parenting time, the court must make the decision. Generally, the court considers a number of factors when making its decision. Considerations include the child’s age and health, the available time each parent has away from work and other commitments, as well as the child’s school schedule, the living accommodations in the two homes and the distance between the homes. In all of these cases, the child’s best interests are the overriding factor the court considers when making its decision.
What happens if a parent disobeys a parenting time order?
In situations in which one parent disobeys a court order for parenting time, the other parent is not allowed to choose not to pay child support, refuse parenting time or take some other action to hurt the parent who has violated the parenting time order. All of these actions would constitute violations of the parenting time order as set by the court. The court is the only recourse and means of resolving these disputes. The parent who is seeking to enforce the parenting time order needs to file a formal written request with the Clerk of the Superior Court. This also requires paying a filing fee. In some cases, a hearing might be called if the dispute still cannot be resolved.
What actions can the court take if a parent disobeys a parenting time order?
If a parent files a written request for enforcement of a parenting time order, state law holds that the court should act expeditiously. The court can choose from different remedies in terms of deciding how to respond to the parent who has violated the parenting time order. Possible remedies include requiring parenting time to make up for sessions that were missed or requiring the parent who violated the parenting time order to take education classes or have counseling. The court may also find the parent who has violated the order to be in contempt of court and order the parent to pay monetary fines.
An experienced Arizona family law attorney can advise you on your particular situation and help you protect your rights. To learn more about Arizona family law and to discuss your situation with a experienced family law lawyer, call the Baker Law Firm at 602-842-0359.