Q: Is my ex husband legally allowed to refuse my rights to visitation with my son if I owe back child support
I've been in and out of the hospital for the past four years and have been homeless for three years of that. My ex-husband, with whom I share joint custody, yesterday refused to allow me to see, talk to, and spend time with my son. He claims that legally he had the right to refuse me visitation with my son because I owe $3600 in child support (I'm working to pay this off in the next 3 to 4 months, this means that I will starve myself to do it but it is necessary). I am I type 1 diabetic paying for medicine in order to live out of pocket. I have also been paying the IRS back taxes. I also have a 12 year old daughter, who is in my custody, that I pay money to my parents that are helping me when I work. My son is eight years old and my ex-husband is a man who works live for me to not have any parental rights to him. Please help me in knowing what to do in order to prevent having my visitation and parental rights blocked by my ex-husband.
A: Parenting time is not connected to child support. However, given the time you have been away, it may be a good idea to set up counseling to ensure a smooth transition back to regular court ordered parenting time.
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A: I agree with my colleague. The child support should not stand in the way of being able to visit with the child. However, since four years has passed since you have seen the kids it would be a good idea to work with someone to help insure that things go well getting back into the visits.
A: Child support is a separate issue from visitation. One is not dependent on the other. The gap of time you mentioned might raise some emotions or questions by the father, but you still have the right to visit according to your court-ordered visitation schedule/parenting plan. It is possible for the father to petition the court to suspend or curtail your visitation based upon the circumstances you have described. However, until this happens you have the same visitation rights you have always had.
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