When you fear for your child's safety in the presence of their non-custodial parent, you must take action to protect them. Family courts maintain a range of options to help you protect your child. The best place to start is to consult a family law and child custody attorney who can listen to your situation and provide you with representation.
Petition for Sole Custody
If you have concerns about your child's safety, it's your duty to inform the court as soon as possible. A child custody attorney assists with this process. With documentation of threats or actual events in which the other parent harmed your child, you may be granted temporary or permanent full custody of your child. The court may require the involvement of family or child protective services, therapists, social workers, and other mental health professionals to serve as independent advocates for your children during this process.
Request a Protective Order
Another available step you may take involves requesting a protective order. In some courts, this is also called a restraining order. The court requires documentation of threats made against you or your children by the non-custodial parent. This documentation could include voicemail recordings, social media or text messages screenshots, or videos of abusive behaviors and threats. Medical records and police reports may also help you receive a restraining order. Protective orders typically have a limited duration of time. A family law attorney can assist you with the evidence, documentation, and filing of this request.
Seek Supervised Visitation
Seek supervised visitation between the non-custodial parent and your child. Under supervised visitation, the non-custodial parent's time with the child will be closely supervised by an independent third party appointed by the court. The third party may be a social worker, psychologist, child advocate, or other licensed and trained professional. Supervised visitation typically takes place at a specific location chosen by the court, such as the child protective services department or another social work agency. The visits may be recorded and reviewed by the court. The court takes these requests seriously and will consider the documentation you provide regarding the other parent's potential to harm your child. A judge may also request testimony from medical and mental health professionals.
Protecting your child's safety during visits with their non-custodial parent requires accurate and specific legal advice and airtight court orders. Our family law attorneys offer legal counsel and representation to help you protect your rights and those of your child.
The knowledgeable child custody attorneys at Parchman Law Group P.L.L.C. also offer support, guidance, and answers to your questions about child visitation. To schedule a consultation with our family law attorneys, call us today at (713) 364-0777.