What if My Ex Will Not Follow Child Custody Orders?
07 September 2022IN: Child Custody
Going through a divorce with children involved can be one of the most stressful and frustrating experiences that a parent can have. Many parents may breathe a sigh of relief when the custody orders are finally put into effect by the court, thinking that the hardest part of the process is over. However, these parents are often disappointed to learn that having custody orders is only part of the struggle — getting their ex to follow them can pose another gauntlet of legal challenges. Luckily, if your spouse will not comply with the court-ordered custody agreement, you are not on your own. You have legal options available to you to enforce the custody terms and conditions that your ex is breaching.
Permanent Parenting Plan Violations
When parties go through a divorce in Tennessee and have shared children, they must prepare a Permanent Parenting Plan to present to the court. This plan covers all terms of their parenting agreement, including which parent will have primary physical custody and how much child support the noncustodial parent will be responsible for paying each month. The agreement will also cover the terms of visitation. The court will assess this plan to ensure that it is in the best interest of the child or children. Provided the plan is found to be in the best interest of the child, the judge will order the plan into effect. Once the plan is ordered into effect, there are serious consequences for failing to abide by its terms.
What to Do if Your Ex is Ignoring Child Custody Orders in TN
If you are frustrated and unsure of what to do because your ex is ignoring court-ordered custody terms, you have a couple of options in Tennessee. One option is to return to court and have a judge take action to obtain the child support payments that you are owed or to enforce the terms of the child custody agreement that are not being followed. This may involve having child support payments taken directly from your ex’s paycheck, holding them in civil or criminal contempt of court, sending them to jail for 10 days, or issuing a fine. If the term at issue is the payment of child support, another option is to contact Tennessee Child Support Office to file a child support enforcement action, which may cause them to take the child support payments that they owe from their paycheck each month. In any case, the first step is to consult with an attorney. An attorney will be able to help you assess the best options available to you and how to go about enforcement. In some cases, it may be a good idea to petition the court for a modification of the existing agreement. This is best when the original parenting plan is no longer in the best interest of the child. For instance, if the noncustodial parent has repeatedly missed visitation or showed up for visits under the influence of alcohol or another illegal substance, it is likely not in the child’s best interest to continue enforcing the plan as it is.
Contact the Law Office of David L. Scott in Murfreesboro, TN
If your ex is not complying with your court-ordered custody agreement, the Law Office of David L. Scott can help. Contact David L. Scott in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, today, to schedule a consultation.