COVID-19 Family Law Q&A by State

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COVID-19 Family Law Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Divorce, Family Law and Child Custody for Massachusetts on
Q: Can a joint custodial parent veto a particular child therapist?

I share joint 50/50 legal custody of my 5 yr old child w my ex. Our agreement was filed w the court in 2017. My ex would like a therapist (who has not yet met our child but has shown bias against me as a non-birth mom) to start seeing our child every other week for therapy. Our current child... Read more »

Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa answered on Feb 24, 2021

You should request a therapist referral from the provider who is leaving for a successor therapist. Both parents should have input for the new provider. If the other parent refuses and there is a proceeding pending or if there is not a proceeding one would need to be brought- for Modification... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Divorce, Family Law, Estate Planning and Probate for California on
Q: In CA. My husband/his ex never filed a QDRO. He died. What do I need to do to get CalPERS to pay me his pension?

He caught Covid in the line of duty. I had POA for CalPERS. I'm his beneficiary. I got the QDRO drafted but it wasn't ready until a month after he died so he couldn't sign it. How do I get an order from court that doesn't require his signature so CalPERS will release the lien on... Read more »

Tobie Brina Waxman
Tobie Brina Waxman answered on Feb 23, 2021

You probably don't have standing to act on his behalf in family court. That being said, there's definitely something that can be done. When someone dies, the successor in interest (probably you) can be joined into the divorce case to sign documents, including a QDRO. That's what... Read more »

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3 Answers | Asked in Family Law for Ohio on
Q: If I have full custody do I have to let my daughter go visit her mother in another state if I don't feel it's safe to do

I have full custody in ohio and she doesnt have any legal rights as moved to california. Shes demanding I send her to California during the pandemic and I have no clue who she lives with or would be around if something happened.

Joseph Jaap
Joseph Jaap answered on Feb 23, 2021

It depends on what the custody order or parenting plan says about time with the other parent. Review those, or use the Find a Lawyer tab to retain a local family law attorney to review all the circumstances and advise you.

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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Texas on
Q: What's the best way to approach the situation without breaking court order?

The parents are unmarried & recently separated. I want to make sure that the baby has same amount of time with each other. Because of the pandemic & the winter we are enduring. The father thinks I'm using it as an excuse to alienate. But he works (he has had the past week off cause of... Read more »

Jonathan Tanaka
Jonathan Tanaka answered on Feb 19, 2021

Hello, thanks for your question! I would recommend that you reach out to a local attorney in your area soon so that the attorney can learn more about what is going on and advise you as to how to proceed.

The title of your post says "without breaking a court order" -- is there...
Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for South Carolina on
Q: My exwife has custody of our kids, during my visits she tells me I’m not aloud to take my kids to a restaurant during

The pandemic and if I do take them out I won’t be aloud to come get my kids of a certain period of time as punishment. What can I do about this?

Cheryl Ann Truesdale
Cheryl Ann Truesdale answered on Feb 17, 2021

It depends on what your court order says. If the order grants you a defined schedule of visitation - alternate weekends from 6 pm Friday to 6 pm Sunday, for example - and your ex-wife is interfering with that schedule, you can file a rule to show cause in court to seek enforcement of that... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Nevada on
Q: I have Covid court Oder say I have to send kids back to other parent will I get in trouble if I don’t ?
Bonnie M Lonardo
Bonnie M Lonardo answered on Feb 15, 2021

I always advise my clients to adhere to the court order as closely as possible to avoid punishment due to court order violations. Additionally, I always encourage my clients to communicate openly with the other party and to discuss matters such as these amicably, before resorting to court... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Support for Alabama on
Q: Im 5k behind on child support since covid hit. I'm wondering what I should do & will I be going to jail for this?
Shane Michael Oncale
Shane Michael Oncale answered on Feb 13, 2021

You should immediately consult an attorney or file yourself to have your child support payments suspended or at least reduced. One of the big secrets of child support that they should make you aware of when you are first ordered to pay but don't is that if something happens in your life that... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody and Child Support for Texas on
Q: My son has 2 boys 9 and 10 years old. He and the mother were together for 4 years. He paid everything including ins.

insurance and her mothers rent and taxes. They split and she only allowed him 1 hour on Sunday to see them and only what she said they can do. Now its at 2 hours but he has not seen them in 10 months. He try to call them at the assigned time she gave them but has instructed boys they dont have to... Read more »

Sharita Blacknall
Sharita Blacknall answered on Feb 10, 2021

Your son needs to hire an attorney to file a suit affecting the parent-child relationship. This will give him an enforceable order regarding visitation and child support. If the mother does not follow the court's order the Judge has the option to give your son extra visitation days to make up... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Massachusetts on
Q: I had to file contempt for my ex to provide his financial statement. He has yet to do so. What’s the next step for me?

A week has past since the contempt hearing where the judge verbally told him to provide this info to me.

Brian Waller
Brian Waller answered on Feb 10, 2021

In my experience, judges don't have a lot of patience for things that aren't a good use of their time, like having a hearing that doesn't accomplish anything because one party hasn't provided info they were supposed to provide. Judges have a lot of discretion in how they handle... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for New York on
Q: Co-parent with equal custody and visitation is requiring to see a negative COVID test from me before I see my daughter.

I travel once a month for work and follow all protocols including obtaining COVID testing. Every time I travel, my daughter's mother demands to see a negative COVID test from me before she will allow my daughter to come back to me. We have had a one week on/one week off visitation schedule... Read more »

Lawrence Allen Weinreich
Lawrence Allen Weinreich answered on Jan 31, 2021

The order is the order and must be followed as written. There have been several reported cases which say that. You have the right to file a violation petition and a writ to get your daughter. In the end, it will be up to the court to decide if the mother had the right to withhold your daughter.

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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Florida on
Q: Due to Covid I might not be able to live in my rented home, or home town.

In our family plan, it says it I cannot move more than 50 miles away. But he has moved over three times always in the 50 miles further and further. We’re almost at the furthest point we can be. I currently live in Miami I would like to move to Fort Lauderdale or maybe even south somewhere where... Read more »

Vanessa Vasquez de Lara
Vanessa Vasquez de Lara answered on Jan 29, 2021

Relocations are moving more than 50 miles from where you lived at the time that the parenting plan was entered. The move is not 50 miles from the Father. This could lead you both to living up to 99.9 miles from each other if you each move almost 50 miles from the original family home. This could... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Divorce for California on
Q: found my husband in our bed with another woman. he has moved out with her and his father has given me 2 weeks to get out

He has been threatening me with ridiculous things like turning me into authority for drug dealing and prostitution and tax evasion and unemployment fraud. Said his father was going to sue me for back rent and put an eviction on my record . I had to give back my wedding ring and not allowed to see... Read more »

Maurice Mandel II
Maurice Mandel II answered on Jan 25, 2021

So sorry to hear you are being treated this way. Yes, you have rights. Suggest you contact a local Family Law attorney or the Legal Aid society about getting a divorce and seeking a temporary restraining order against your spouse, his girlfriend and his father for the harassment. Meanwhile, you... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Child Support, Divorce and Family Law for Florida on
Q: Does he not owe child support due to COVID lockdowns and terms of the child support agreement?

Ex-spouse & I signed a mediation agreement early 2020, just before legally mandated lockdowns. in lieu of paying to court, ex agreed to pay equivalent amount of per guidelines child support by paying child's insurance coverage (pretax from paycheck) & day/aftercare. Shortly after... Read more »

Rand Scott Lieber
Rand Scott Lieber answered on Jan 19, 2021

You need to read your agreement carefully. He is not "off the hook." However, if the agreement says he pays the daycare directly and the daycare closed then he can argue that he does not have to pay. You may need to go back to court for clarification or enforcement. What he did or is... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Ohio on
Q: I live in ohio on the pa line and was told by my ex that I can't see my child because of covid lock down rules.

Do I have the right to see my child in pa

Joseph Jaap
Joseph Jaap answered on Jan 14, 2021

You have the rights given to you by the court order for parenting time. But the lockdown rules have created an unusual situation, and problems for compliance. You can file a motion with the court to enforce the court's order, but your ex can then explain to the judge her reasons for limiting... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Michigan on
Q: Hi I have been paying support over 19 years at work attached payments and 5 years myself im still paying

2016 my uc ran out i was done in 08 with child support they lost my record had to go back me and my wife and they came up with I owed her 2000$and 24000 to the state I've paid a total of close to 20 years she won't miss work to go stop the order when it was current they were taking from... Read more »

Brent T. Geers
Brent T. Geers answered on Jan 7, 2021

You really need to gather all records you have, including getting a copy of your payment history. It's not necessarily a question of how many years you paid; it's a matter of how much money you owe during the period you were ordered to pay child support. It is possible to have arrearages... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody and Divorce for California on
Q: Is it considered kidnapping if I bring my daughter with me to visit family in Hawaii if my husband doesn’t give consent?

My husband and I are still married, live together in Southern California, and never had any custody hearings. He doesn’t want our daughter to go. His reasoning is because of COVID-19 but we just went to visited his parents in Northern California. So I don’t see the difference.

Paul Ylvisaker
Paul Ylvisaker answered on Jan 2, 2021

No. If you are parents married with no court orders limiting where when and who the child can be with, either parent can travel freely subject to not putting the child’s health safety and welfare in jeopardy. In this case that would following protocols for travel. Covid-19 has been addressed by... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody, Child Support and Family Law for Texas on
Q: My step daughter’s mother tested positive for covid. If the child is negative does she have to stay with her?

My step daughters mother and her boyfriend tested positive for COVID. My stepdaughter who lives with them majority of the time tested negative in which my husband and I suggested she not stay with her mother if she is negative. But her mom refuses and says she will quarantine with her. She... Read more »

John J. Pfister Jr.
John J. Pfister Jr. answered on Jan 1, 2021

This is a unique problem related to the COVID situation. The Texas Supreme Court has issued a general order that parents are to follow the underlying order regardless of lockdowns and school closures. If a parent wants to deviate from the current order - for any reason including a positive COVID... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Nevada on
Q: My family law court case has been postponed 3 times, each time with a 60 day delay, until the next hearing.

Most recently, the judge granted an ex-parte application , without sending me a copy of the application, and without me being heard. How can I object to these delays of Hearing?

Bonnie M Lonardo
Bonnie M Lonardo answered on Dec 23, 2020

Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s been fairly common for hearings to be postponed – sometimes even more than once. When a judge rules to postpone a case, it can be due to matters outside the party’s control, as in the case with COVID, or based on the judge’s determination.... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Ohio on
Q: I live in ohio, my ex keeps letting his parents around my kid when he has her, the dont believe in the virus, or any

Of the social distancing or mask wearing and also live in pa, what do i do? Ive told me ex i dont want them around her bc they not following the rules and going anywhere and fear for my healt and my child’s

Joseph Jaap
Joseph Jaap answered on Dec 9, 2020

If you don't follow the court ordered parenting plan, then your ex can file to have the court hold you in contempt. You could then explain your concerns to the judge. Or you could file with the court to modify the parenting plan to include additional requirements and limitations to cope with... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Texas on
Q: ex is trying to take me to court for paternity year later but she admitted to being married & cheating. What can I do?

Ex is trying to take me to court for a baby I didn’t know she was having in 2019 and it’s been over a year I just got a letter about court during the pandemic. what can I do to have the case dropped?

Sharita Blacknall
Sharita Blacknall answered on Dec 3, 2020

You should hire an attorney to assist you.

If you do not answer the lawsuit timely she will get a default judgment against you. Which means she gets what she is asking for.

You need to get a DNA test to see if the child is yours.

If the child is not yours the case will be...
Read more »

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