Is It Possible to Refuse a Court Ordered Visitation?
Court-ordered parental visitations are legally-binding and they aim to encourage little ones to spend more time with their non-custodial parent.
As a custodial parent, however, you may be opposed to this arrangement.
If your children become anxious about the visit and they don’t want to go, for example, you’ll probably be reluctant to cooperate in the enforcement of the court order.
The big question here focuses on whether you can refuse a court-ordered parental visitation in Arizona. Here are the most important legal specifics.
Do You Have the Right to Refuse a Court-Ordered Visitation?
The short answer to this question is yes.
A court-ordered visitation refusal, however, has to be based on the right reasons.
The fact that you don’t like your ex or you believe they’re influencing the kids in the wrong way does not qualify as a valid reason that the Arizona court will accept.
Refusing visitation rights is possible in a very specific, limited set of circumstances. We’ll take a deeper look at those in the section below.
Click here for information on planning for parenting time in Arizona.
When Can You Refuse Non-Custodial Parent Visitations
Whenever your ex-spouse is violating the terms and conditions of the court-ordered visitation, you have the right to contact the court and ask for a modification of the order.
In such instances, you can turn to the Arizona court with information and evidence about how the visitation arrangement has been violated. The court could decide to change the schedule and allow less frequent parental visitations.
As a custodial parent, you’re held accountable by the court to stick to the visitation schedule and enforce it. The only situations in which you could refuse the arrangement include the following:
- You are afraid that your children may be harmed during the parental visitations
- You suspect child abuse
- Your child is distressed before and after the visitation with the non-custodial parent
- Your child refuses to go or to speak to your ex-spouse (in such instances, you should first seek a court intervention to rectify the situation)
What Happens When Children Refuse Visitations
When your child refuses meeting their other parent or feels stressed out about it, you’ll obviously have to seek the assistance of the court.
Can your children refuse the visitation?
The court order is as legally binding for you, as it is for your child.
You will need to approach the Arizona court and seek modification of the custody arrangement whenever it’s stressing your child. Before the arrangement is modified, however, you’ll be responsible for upholding the schedule and making sure your child is seeing their other parent.
And if You Deny Your Ex Visitation Rights?
Refusing a visitation with your ex-spouse is obviously not possible in most circumstances. Even if you’re troubled by a certain aspect of your former spouse’s behavior, you’ll still have to go through the court before a modification occurs.
What if you refuse the visitation anyways?
Your ex-spouse can document every single denial and the circumstances that contributed to it. Such evidence can be used against you in court. The easiest way to collect evidence in such instances is to call the police and get a police report that legally documents the situation.
A custodial parent that denies their former spouse visitation rights could be held in contempt of court. Fines and even jail time could result from the denial and the evidence your ex has collected.
Don’t act impulsively and talk to your Arizona family law attorney before undertaking anything. Custodial arrangements can be changed quickly and effectively in Arizona. Going the legal route is a much better idea than taking things in your own hands and facing the consequences.
Click here for information on 6 things to include in your Arizona premarital agreement.