COVID-19 Child Custody Q&A by State

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COVID-19 Child Custody Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Maryland on
Q: Do I need permission from my ex-wife to get my kids covid tested.

I have 50/50 joint custody and my ex is anti-vax and anti covid-19 testing. I want to take my kids to a convention this weekend that requires testing and so I ran it by the kids first, with the intent to ask her after I talked to them. One of the kids told her before I had a chance and now... Read more »

Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley answered on Oct 19, 2021

Is there a court order or judgment in place awarding one of you sole residential custody, or sole or final say in major medical decisions, or do you have shared custody or to you share those decisions equally? Is there a custody agreement in place that addresses the issue? You need to review your... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Ohio on
Q: My daughter's father has tested positive for covid. Our daughter and myself have both tested negative.

She was/is with him for his time according to our shared parenting plan. He is refusing to allow me to pick up our daughter. Can I take her against his wishes and can I refuse visitation with him due to his positive covid result (

Cathy Cook Esq
Cathy Cook Esq answered on Sep 26, 2021

Generally, the Courts are not requiring parents to relinquish parenting time due to a positive COVID test. Has your daughter been vaccinated or is she too young? Does she have any health conditions? Is he wearing a mask, having her do so, and keeping distance?

You might see if her...
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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Massachusetts on
Q: My mother has court ordered visits of one of my daughters, with the rise of Covid again, I'm not comfortable with it

They have 2 grown children who also live in MA and visit them almost daily, but my mother lives in RI. They aren't cautious, but I don't want to be held in contempt. I've offered video calls and outdoor visits, they won't budge. How do I keep my foot down?

Kimberly Erwin
Kimberly Erwin answered on Sep 12, 2021

I don’t know that you can. If the court order was entered after the start of the pandemic, you most likely need to allow visits. If it was entered previous to the pandemic, I would suggest requesting masks (as well as your other requests) be worn in writing. If they refuse, I would document the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Louisiana on
Q: I have Joint custody of my daughter, 15 years of age. My ex-wife is the domicile parent. Does my ex have the right to

give my daughter the Covid-19 vaccine against my wishes? My wishes were stated in a message to my ex on OFW, prior to the first vaccinination and again after the first, and prior to the second.

Ellen Cronin Badeaux
Ellen Cronin Badeaux answered on Aug 26, 2021

Yes as the domiciliary parent, she has the right to give your daughter an FDA approved, CDC recommended vaccination which is also recommended by the AMA to prevent potentially terminal disease including: measles, mumps, rubella, polio, meningitis, HPV, pneumonia, chicken pox, diphtheria, pertussis... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody and Child Support for New Jersey on
Q: I have a 16 yr old granddaughter whom was living with her mother in GA. Her mom kicked her out and sent her to her fathe

To NJ. Granddaughter wants to live with father. Mother refused to send docs to father. As her maternal grandmother can I ask the court for a law guardian for my Granddaughter. Father can't get birth certificate, his name isn't on it. My daughter wants her daughter to live hard. Job corps... Read more »

Teresa L. Reichek
Teresa L. Reichek answered on Aug 23, 2021

Thank you for your question. I am so sorry that you and your granddaughter have to go through this stressful time.

The most direct answer is you can file a grandparents rights application and request formal custody of your granddaughter. Then the court can order your daughter to turn over...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody and Child Support for California on
Q: Dad tested positive for COVID. My daughter is negative. We are 50/50. He wont negotiate his time. What can I do?

We are one week on/off. He wants to pick her up even though his whole household tested positive. She is negative and I don’t want her to get sick. I told him I would give him back his time or use vacation days while I have her till his family gets a negative Covid test. He won’t have any of it... Read more »

Paramprit Bindra
Paramprit Bindra answered on Aug 5, 2021

1. Try talking to the father again.

2. You may file a Request for Temporary Emergency (EX Parte) Orders and ask that no visitation to Father.

3. Depending on which county you live in you may consider filing a good cause report, but usually filing one requires immediate threat of...
Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Georgia on
Q: Can the other parent restrict the other from visitation based on awaiting Covid results? Court appointed
Michael D. Birchmore
Michael D. Birchmore answered on Jul 30, 2021

The best response I can provide would be to tell you -- it depends. The law in general is always going to boil down to precisely what has happened and precisely what has occurred in court and precisely what court rulings have been made. Your question assumes that a "yes" or... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Adoption, Child Custody, Child Support and Family Law for Florida on
Q: Can I petition for custody of my grandson? Or at least try to get visitations established thru the court?

I had been raising my 6 1/2 grandson all his life. 100% by myself for the past 5 years with no help from his mother(my daughter) or his dad. 3 weeks ago his father showed up with his name finally on the B.C. & they also called DCF making outrageous false allegations concerning my 16yo son. The... Read more »

Camila Martin
Camila Martin answered on Jul 29, 2021

You should consult with an attorney that can assist you after getting more information on your particular case. You could file a Petition for Temporary Custody by Extended Family in Family Court where a Judge will make a determination on whether or not it is in the child's best interest that... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Adoption, Child Custody and Family Law for Florida on
Q: Is it possible for a grandparent to get custody of grandchild if for 6 years they were the ones taking caring him?

I have a 6 1/2 yo grandson I have been caring for and supporting all his life. About 3 weeks ago his father showed up to my door with DCF and with his birth certificate. I was told I had to let him go with his father even though the child doesnt even know him. For the past 3 weeks I have been... Read more »

Rand Scott Lieber
Rand Scott Lieber answered on Jul 28, 2021

In family court (sounds like paternity in your case) there are no provisions for grandparent visitation. The only way that you might be able to pursue this is through dependency court. Look for a family attorney who specializes in dependency in your area that might give you a free or low cost... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Massachusetts on
Q: I am in a custody battle, with potential trial in August. My fiance and I are getting married

I left my ex when he was cheating again and he then moved in, knocked up and married the other woman. 50/50 verbal agreement was working the best possible. 1 year later I took my ex to court because he began withholding our children from me when I told him I was in a serious relationship. We have a... Read more »

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Jul 9, 2021

So, domestic abuse is a serious allegation and you have not stated the outcome of the charge(s) either. The Court would need to find that there is no risk to the children from being around this individual despite your romantic attachment and the Court could potentially grant father custody. Having... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for New York on
Q: Is it possible for an incarcerated father to get court ordered visitation? No paternity has been established

It’s not safe to bring my 1 year old to a jail with the virus going on. He’s threatening to take me to court if I don’t bring my child there.

Lawrence Allen Weinreich
Lawrence Allen Weinreich answered on Jun 1, 2021

It is possible to get visitation in a prison. However, your first problem is to establish paternity. Without paternity being established the courts will not order any type of visitation or contact.

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1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Louisiana on
Q: I want to shorten the agreed visitation time because my child is not being well taken care of.

The agreed visitation time is two weeks due to the father work schedule. The recent visit took a turn for the worse and I saw how sick and unkept ,without my knowledge, his heat rashes and eczema has progressed, as well as a peaking cold. His father left him to visits his girlfriend and left the... Read more »

Ellen Cronin Badeaux
Ellen Cronin Badeaux answered on May 11, 2021

1) Get your child a Covid vaccination if over age 12,

2) if you have a judgment, you will have to hire an attorney to change it and can be held in contempt if you don't follow it in the mean time.

3) if you don't have a judgment, hire a custody lawyer to get one Nd you can...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Domestic Violence for New Jersey on
Q: I recently applied for my firearms license in NJ. I was denied due to my "violent and aggressive history."

I've been in a relationship for 6 years now and he had a nasty divorce/custody battle in the first three years. His ex-wife filed multiple false police reports against me thinking that it would sway the custody verdict but she ultimately lost custody. In one of the reports, she coached her... Read more »

Richard Diamond
Richard Diamond answered on May 10, 2021

I would contact your local police chief and / or the county prosecutors office and ask for the background search material and the source[s] giving rise to the concerns voiced about you. The less confrontational you are with them, the more likely they will be to provide the information sought (... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Alaska on
Q: My kids were homeschooled by both parents in our separate homes this year. I can't make this accommodation next year.

Our divorce began as COVID 19 started. My ex. and I pulled the kids from in person learning as the schools COVID rates were sorted out. Fast forward to now, we have 1 case every few weeks in our small rural Alaskan village and the school has implemented an effective mitigation plan keeping kids... Read more »

Phyllis Shepherd
Phyllis Shepherd answered on Apr 28, 2021

I will assume that you do not have a court order granting either parent sole legal custody. Assuming both of you are equally good parents, courts prefer that equally good parents cooperate for the best interests of the children. Pediatricians and other health care professionals recognize the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Texas on
Q: When will my court date be?

My child’s father is not allowing me to have visitation with my daughter. I plan on filing motion to enforce. After I file the paperwork, how soon will my court date be scheduled for?

Jonathan Tanaka
Jonathan Tanaka answered on Mar 24, 2021

Thanks for your question!

It really depends. A lot of courts have been significantly affected by COVID. Many hearings here have been pushed out to June/July.

Have you reached out to an attorney yet? I would recommend that you contact a local family law attorney in Katy, TX so the...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody for Alaska on
Q: Can custodial parent send child to spend summer out of state without noncustodial parents permission?
Phyllis Shepherd
Phyllis Shepherd answered on Mar 19, 2021

I am assuming that this child is a resident of the state of Alaska and the fact that you call one parent custodial and the other parent noncustodial, suggests that there is an Alaskan court order governing this situation. If the court order does not mention the situation of a child traveling out... Read more »

3 Answers | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody and Child Support for Georgia on
Q: I am Pro Se and would like a continuance to withdrawal from the final hearing via zoom. I want an in-person hearing.

How do I make this request being Pro Se?

Regina Irene Edwards
Regina Irene Edwards answered on Mar 17, 2021

This may not be possible. Zoom hearings are standard because of the pandemic. Judges are required to hold via zoom absent an emergency.

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2 Answers | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody, Child Support and Civil Litigation for Georgia on
Q: Who gets the benefits for Covid relief and dependent tax credit due to custody change in year 2020. See more details!

My ex ended up claiming the kids on taxes and received all the COVID relief money 1st, 2nd, and it looks like the 3rd. Below is the history and im looking for who is the rightful owner of this. Also Ive tried discussing it with the other party several times and the reply i get is "not up for... Read more »

Regina Irene Edwards
Regina Irene Edwards answered on Mar 8, 2021

If you have primary custody, you can claim the children as dependents. You can't do anything about the COVID relief money. If your ex owes you child support since September, you can file a contempt for that.

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1 Answer | Asked in Divorce, Family Law, Child Custody and Child Support for North Carolina on
Q: My Wife's family all have COVID. She wants to bring our 1 yr old to their home for a full week. Do I have legal options?

My soon to be ex wife is taking my son out of state to her parents home where at least 4 people have COVID. Are there any legal routes I can follow if my soon contracts COVID while there?

Mr. Albert Loch Saslow
Mr. Albert Loch Saslow answered on Mar 5, 2021

If you don't have an existing custody case, I would consider filing one ASAP. If you have an existing case, you may want to file a Motion for Emergency Custody before she leaves alleging that the child will be exposed to a substantial risk of bodily injury. Some judges may agree that such a... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Georgia on
Q: how to file a motion to intervene to gain custody or at least fair visitation of my grandson from other grandparent

The other grandparents have taken my grandson from my daughter under complicated circumstances to which I was not privy too nor given the chance to intervene they are in the process of seeking custody but not allowing me to see my grandchild while they have temporary custody. I don't have any... Read more »

Homer P Jordan IV
Homer P Jordan IV answered on Mar 4, 2021

You may be able to petition for some visitation rights, but it would require working with an attorney. Try contacting Legal Aid to see if you qualify for free legal assistance. You can also try calling the state bar to see if there is a pro bono attorney in your area.

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