Dealing with a difficult co-parent is hard; that much is a given. So going to court to have your rights established or to formalize a parenting time schedule is supposed to make co-parenting with a difficult person easier, right? Not always. Your ex can still make your life miserable by trying to manipulate the kids, be petty about exchanges and times, and disobey the order if they feel the judge won’t hold them in contempt. If this is your experience, you may want the court to do something.
But before you seek court intervention, it is important to know what types of disputes family courts will not get involved in. This post will provide a few examples.
Disputes over fees for extracurricular activities – Fees for swimming lessons, music classes and sports leagues are commonly not included in child support payments. These fees are generally viewed as expenses that parents pay out of their own incomes.
Meal choices – If one parent commonly takes the kids out for fast food while the other parent cooks at home, a family court judge is generally not going to intervene. However, if there is demonstrated harm to a child (i.e. allergic reactions or dietary concerns that are unchecked), a court could get involved.
New love interests – It may be in bad taste to bring a new boyfriend or girlfriend around a child, but it may not be a basis for a change in custody simply because the other parent doesn’t like him or her.
If you have questions about when a court will get involved in a parenting time dispute, an experienced family law attorney can help.