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Children and the Law
Child Support

How can you deny joint custody to an abusive parent?

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2017-03-14 16:50:52
2017-03-14 16:50:52

YOU cannot deny any custody or visitation. Only the court can make an enforceable decision regarding these matters. State laws vary.

If physical abuse is the case, the custodial parent will need a record of the abuse and should call the police, take pictures to record the effects, and try to have dis-interested witnesses present at the time of any contact between the parents. If there is no abuse to the children, or no abuse in the presence of the children, it is unlikely to make any change in the court decision for joint custody. It may compel the court to make some order for supervised exchange of the children for visitation.

Only the court can make any decision, especially regarding custody. If the non-custodial parent is abusive to the children it may be very good grounds for a sole custody arrangement. It may also encourage the court to provide for supervised visitation.

Visitation is a different issue than custody. Visitation is the means for the non-custodial parent to have a relationship with the children and build that relationship. A court generally regards this as semi-sacred. A custodial parent should NOT deny visitation. If it is necessary to curtail visitation for the real safety of the children, the custodial parent should immediately file a request for a change of visitation. Otherwise, a court may frown on a parent who denies visitation. In some states, continual denial of visitation can be grounds for a change of custody.

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