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Child custody and visitation interference can raise legal issues

Divorces can be messy, with parties contesting every element of a marriage dissolution. Although a lot of the negative animosity disappears when the divorce is finalized, for many Louisiana residents disagreements linger and affect an individual's post-divorce life. This most often occurs in the child custody and visitation context. When a court awards custody or visitation to one parent and the other parent interferes with that court ordered contact, very serious legal issues can arise.

In these instances, it is always best for the parties to try to resolve the conflict on their own. By talking it out, parents may be able to come to an agreement that saves everyone time, money and energy. Parents should not, on the other hand, try to get revenge on their child's other parent by interfering with their parenting time. This could backfire, leading to a new court order that limits or eliminates contact with the child.

If a child custody or visitation issue cannot be resolved by the parents, it might be time to seek a child custody modification. For example, in a joint physical custody arrangement, a parent who has been denied access to the child by the other parent may wish to seek sole custody. On the flipside, if a parent is considering interfering with custody or visitation because of safety concerns related to contact with the other parent, then a modification may need to be sought to restrict that parent's access to the child.

In the end, parents in Louisiana need to ensure that they are taking advantage of their legal rights as parents and are doing everything they can to support their children's best interests.

Source: FindLaw, "Custody or Visitation Interference," accessed on April 22, 2016

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