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How will the courts handle custody order non-compliance?

Like you, a Vancouver family law court's primary concern during a custody dispute is the well-being of the child. Decisions a judge makes focus on the best interests of the child even when those interests may conflict with the desires of a parent. Once a court order for custody, parenting time or visitation is in place, it is not optional, and both parents must adhere to the terms of the order.

If you are struggling because your child's other parent refuses to comply with custody orders, you may feel frustrated and even angry. Whether is it because the other parent regularly fails to uphold his or her scheduled custody appointments or the other parent refuses to allow you court-ordered access to the children, you would be wise to seek legal advice about how best to proceed.

Seeking guidance for custody issues

Research continues to show the importance of children having contact with both parents as often as their circumstances permit. To this end, courts are prone to making decisions that divide parenting time as equitably as possible. If your co-parent refuses to allow you access to the children despite a court order or legal agreement, you have every right to seek a remedy for this situation. The following are some important details you should understand concerning the denial of parenting time:

  • Your co-parent may not deny you time with the children because of delinquent child support payments.
  • If your co-parent denies you access to the children, a judge may order the parent to allow you extra time to make up for what you lost.
  • The court may also require your co-parent to reimburse you if the denied parenting time resulted in financial loss for you.
  • The other parent may face a fine but will not be subject to jail time for refusing to allow you access to the children.
  • The judge may require you and the other parent to seek counselling or family dispute resolution.
  • You may have a valid reason to refuse the other parent time with the children if you suspect the other parent is using drugs or in some way placing the children in danger.

On the other side of the issue, your co-parent may routinely miss his or her custody appointments. More serious than the inconvenience this presents you, not showing up for parenting time can leave your children upset and confused, and may force you to make excuses to comfort them. No matter the types of issues you face related to child custody and parenting matters, there is a great deal at stake. You may find it beneficial to have a legal advocate to help you achieve your goals.

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