This is the next post in our series on the handling of Orange County child custody cases in which the parents are unmarried. Our last article discussed what one should expect at a child custody trial. Understanding what to expect from the process will help one to be better prepared when it is time for their day in Court. In this article we will be discussing another important topic – how the parents should conduct themselves after the case is concluded.
It is important for parents to respect and follow the final order of the Court even if they do not agree with it. This order will include the Court’s decision on custody, visitation, child support, health coverage responsibility, and more. If a parent does not follow the order then there may be consequences. Say, for example, a parent believes that they should have been awarded more time with the child and they choose to keep the child beyond the time they have been allotted. Such a parent may find themselves held in contempt of Court and the other parent may then have grounds to request a change of child custody which reduces the offending parent’s time with the child even further. Other examples of not following an order may include failing to share information such as school records, refusing to pay child support, etc. Again, these types of violations have consequences.
There are multiple reasons why the parents of a child must respect each after a case has been concluded. First and foremost, it is detrimental to a child when his or her parent’s argue and fail to work together. Second, should one ever need to return to Court then they will need to be able to demonstrate that they have been reasonable, that they have tried to maintain a relationship between the child and the other parent, and that they can provide a stable environment for the child going forward. The best ways to ensure that the Judge will view you in a favorable light is to follow the Court’s order to the letter, to always be polite to the other parent, to refrain from arguing in front of the child, and to be actively involved in the child’s life. If you are the parent who received a minority of time with the child then it is crucial that you exercise all of the time that you were given; failing to do so can give the parent with primary custody grounds to request that your timeshare be reduced even further.
If you are an Orange County parent and have questions about how you should proceed in your situation then contact our child custody attorneys today to schedule an initial consultation. Our lawyers have extensive experience in such matters and are ready to assist you. Our lawyers also service Aliso Viejo, Anaheim, Buena Park, Costa Mesa, Dana Point, Fountain Valley, Fullerton, Garden Grove, Huntington Beach, Irvine, La Habra, Ladera Ranch, Laguna Beach, Laguna Hills, Laguna Niguel, Lake Forest, Mission Viejo, Newport Beach, Orange, Placentia, Rancho Santa Margarita, San Clemente, San Juan Capistrano, Santa Ana, Tustin, Westminster, and Yorba Linda.