Parenting time is court ordered time the children are to spend with each parent and is specific to each case. If either parent is refused parenting time as ordered by the court it is considered a denial of parenting time and is enforceable by the Friend of the Court.
Parenting time Enforcement is a manual process requested by a party alleging parenting time has been denied. The process for enforcement begins with a letter to the Friend of the Court Enforcement Caseworker describing the denial and including the dates and request for enforcement. The Enforcement Caseworker then sends out a 21day notice of the alleged denial to both parties. Parties have 21 days to respond to the Friend of the Court with an agreement for make up parenting time. If no agreement is reached, the complaining party can request a show cause hearing in writing to the Friend of the Court to determine if parenting time was wrongfully denied. If no request is received for a show cause hearing the Friend of the Court assumes the parties have reached an agreement and no further action is necessary.
If a show cause hearing is requested, a hearing will be scheduled before the Referee. Both parties are required to attend. At the hearing, evidence and testimony is taken to determine if parenting time was wrongfully denied. You will need to bring documentation and witnesses to the hearing that will support the facts of your case. The show cause hearing could result in a recommended order for make up parenting time, contempt of court, modification, or dismissal as the denied parenting time was not wrongfully denied.
Prior to submitting a denial of parenting time review your parenting time order. If your order contains a provision for reasonable rights of parenting time with no specifics dates, or a provision for parenting time as agreed upon by the parties, or a provision reserving parenting time, a modification of the parenting time order may be a more appropriate avenue to resolve your issues. In addition, verbal or written agreements between the parties that has not been made into a court order are not enforceable. Enforcement Workers do not represent either party and are not allowed to provide services or legal advice. Seeking the advice of an attorney is always recommended.