A custody order is an enforceable decree that must be respected by both parents irrespective of their feelings towards each other. Any party who violates an existing custody order can be held in contempt of court. And there are consequences for this, including the potential loss of custody rights.
However, in some cases, custodial parents do opt to withhold visitation from the other parent. If your ex is preventing you from visiting your children, it is important that you take appropriate (and legal) steps to safeguard your rights. But, while pursuing your court-granted rights, it is important that you avoid these costly mistakes.
Withholding child support
It can be frustrating when your ex is deliberately preventing you from spending time with your child as directed by the court. And this is understandable. However, it is important that both parents honor their responsibility to provide for the child’s financial needs. Failing to pay child support will hurt your child, not your ex. Besides, falling behind in your child support payments can attract contempt of court charges. And this is a serious offense that can result in jail time.
Kidnapping the child
Sometimes, the non-custodial parent may resort to desperate measures such as kidnapping the child. Again, this is a serious offense, with serious penalties. Remember, two wrongs do not make a right.
Fighting the other parent in front of the child
Every parent has a duty to act in the best interest of the child. And fighting or bashing the other parent, especially in the presence of the child is definitely not in the child’s best interest.
Unless by court order, divorced parents are bound by the terms of a custody and visitation order.
If the custodial parent is violating a court order through custody denial, it is in your best interest that you bring the matter to the attention of the court as soon as possible. Taking matters into your own hands will certainly do more harm than good.