Q: My wife and i are currently separated not divorced. She is keeping me from him because I was rude in some way. Help.
My wife and i are currently going through a separation. We have a two, almost three, year old son. Unfortunately we have to agree on a set schedule. After not having him for three weeks my wife calls me saying she will not be able to bring him to me where I live, El Paso Texas and she lives in Glendale Arizona, she asks that I drive up to pick him up to which I agree. After arriving we get into a verbal disagreement and she forces me out of her house. I then proceed to take my son because I figured I would just drive home. She then enters my car and games my son, running inside with him crying. I then beg her to let me see him to which she refuses. Later, as I drive around searching for a hotel she tells me she will not be releasing him to me for my agreed time of two weeks.
So my question here is, can I call local pd and ask for assistance to have my child for my alloted two weeks.
A: Do you have Court Orders? PERHAPS law enforcement may assist you if you have Orders. However, it is more commopn in my experience that they do not intervene, and instead will suggest that you both need to get the Court incolved.
If there are NO Court Ordetrs, file. File now. She does not have the right to unreasonably restrict your access, and if she continues to do so, she herself could suffer repercussions. Do not allow yourself to miss irreplaceable milestones and memories. With your initial "Petition to Estabish", you can also file a Petition for Temporary Orders. Such is the quickest manner of getting to see your Judge. OR, perhaps a strongly worded letter from an experienced attorney would convince her to act more reasonably. Per A.R.S. §13-1302, a person commits custodial interference if, knowing or having reason to know that the person has no legal right to do so, the person . . . . “Before the entry of a court order determining custodial rights, takes, entices or withholds any child from the other parent denying that parent access to any child.”
With most things being somewhat equal, our Court's certainly do order equal parenting time quite often. In fact, A.R.S. §25-403.02(B) requires the Court to adopt a parenting plan that provides for both parents to share legal decision-making regarding their child and that maximizes their respective parenting time (so long as such is in the child's best interests).
A qualified and experienced family law attorney can of course assist you in considering your options and then getting where you need to be.
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A: If you do not have a parenting time order, law enforcement may not do anything to help you. You should contact an experienced family law attorney and, if you are unhappy with the result you obtain in court, contact an experienced family law appeals attorney to inquire as to whether you may be able to obtain post-order relief and/or whether you should file for an appeal with a higher court.
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