Sewell, NJ asked in Family Law and Child Custody for New Jersey

Q: Ex husband picked up my 16yo from school during my court ordered parenting time...what are my options?

I am PPR. Parenting time is shared 50/50...all court ordered. I had a disagreement with my child out of hurt by something she did. She called her dad to pick her up from school during my parenting time, which he did. I spoke with him and he said she doesn't want to come home and he can't make her. He said he didn't know how long she was going to stay there. Was thinking about giving her a cooling off period then picking her up after his scheduled parenting time. Is this a wise decision if i end up having to go back to court? Or do I call the cops? Also, what if he won't let me have her when i go to get her? I didn't think he could just violate an order. I just want to do what's best for her and have her home.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Michael A. Conte
Michael A. Conte
  • Divorce Lawyer
  • Pennington, NJ
  • Licensed in New Jersey

A: This type of issue is sensitive. Being that your post is two weeks old, I presume that one way or another it has resolved by now. As a general rule, it is best to try to address these type of teenager issues delicately, by trying to talk it through with your child, while trying to gently remind the other parent that they have an obligation to try to work with you to see that the custody/parenting-time order is followed. If you are unable to do that on your own, sometimes a letter from a family law attorney that you have retained can help him to understand the gravity of the situation. Another thing to think about is that if the issue is raised in an application with the Court, the Court will recognize that a 16-year-old child is getting relatively close to adulthood. Therefore, before you head into litigation about a child of this age, it is important to consult with a qualified family law attorney to assess the potential costs versus the benefits of all alternatives.

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