As a Dallas family lawyer, I have seen my fair share of cases where a step-parent’s abusive behavior has led to a need for a modification of a custody and visitation order. Whether you are a custodial or non-custodial parent, it is important to know your options for protecting your children in these situations.
Options for Modifying a Custody and Visitation Order in the Face of Abuse
Here are some options. These options are not in order of importance:
Option 1: File a Motion to Modify the Custody and Visitation Order The first option is to file a motion to modify the custody and visitation order. This involves going to court and asking the judge to change the current order based on the step-parent’s abusive behavior. You will need to provide evidence of the abuse, such as police reports, medical records, and witness statements, to support your request for a modification.
Option 2: Seek a Temporary Restraining Order The second option is to seek a temporary restraining order (TRO). A TRO is a court order that requires the abusive step-parent to stay away from you and your children. This can be a useful tool if you need immediate protection while you are waiting for a hearing on your motion to modify the custody and visitation order.
Option 3: Consider Alternative Dispute Resolution The third option is to consider alternative dispute resolution, such as mediation or arbitration. In these processes, you and the other parent will meet with a neutral third party to try to reach an agreement on a new custody and visitation schedule. This can be a quicker and less expensive option than going to court, but it is important to have an attorney represent you in these proceedings to ensure that your rights and the best interests of your children are protected.
Option 4: Contact the Police and/or Child Protective Services It is also important to contact the police and/or child protective services if you believe that your children are at risk of harm from an abusive step-parent. These agencies have the power to investigate and take action to protect the safety and well-being of your children.
If you believe that your children are at risk of harm from an abusive step-parent, it is important to take action to protect them. Whether you choose to file a motion to modify the custody and visitation order, seek a temporary restraining order, consider alternative dispute resolution, or contact the police and/or child protective services, an experienced family lawyer can help you navigate the process and protect your rights and the best interests of your children.
If you are in need of legal assistance in modifying a custody and visitation order in the face of abuse, please don’t hesitate to contact The Blacknall Firm. Our experienced family lawyers are dedicated to protecting the rights and best interests of our clients and their children.