In an ideal world, both parents would be able to remain amicable during and after divorce. Unfortunately, the reality can be much different. The prelude to your divorce may have been messy, with constant tension and arguing.
Your former spouse may feel like they need to punish you once proceedings have closed. They may even deny you access to your children. Is this legal?
Custody orders are binding
If you and your former spouse were not able to come up with a suitable custody arrangement, then the family court will have stepped in. Regarding custody, all rulings of the court are based on the best interests of the child.
Generally, this means that the court will set out a custody arrangement where both parents remain actively involved. Unless the child is in some sort of danger, neither parent will usually be prevented from having access. One parent may not agree with the terms of the custody agreement, but it has to be honored. Breaching a child custody order is a legal violation.
The children cannot be used as a punishment
One of the more common reasons for a co-parent to deny access is when child support has not been paid. This is unlawful because child support and custody are completely separate legal issues. Whether or not child support has been paid, the terms of the custody agreement must be adhered to on all sides.
Not getting to see your children can be heartbreaking, but there are steps you can take to address this issue. It’s important to seek legal guidance so that your parental rights can be restored.